Time to Score on Pay Equity Day For Women in the Workplace April 12
Even President Barack Obama called the U.S. Women’s Soccer team “badass.” So it makes no sense they are paid 40 percent of what players on the U.S. men’s soccer team earn. The women’s soccer team took their complaints to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, just in time for Equity pay Day April 12.Five players from the Olympic championship and World Cup championship team including Hope Solo and Carli Lloyd filed a federal complaint against the U.S. Soccer Federation citing wage unfairness.“We are the best in the world, have three World Cup championships, four Olympic championships,” Solo said. She added that the men’s players “get paid more to just show up than we get paid to win major championships.”According to the New York Times: “A men’s player, for example, receives $5,000 for a loss in a friendly match but as much as $17,625 for a win against a top opponent. A women’s player receives $1,350 for a similar match, but only if the United States wins; women’s players receive no bonuses for losses or ties.”Solo is by far not alone as a woman enduring the pay gap in this country.April 12 is Pay Equity Day, and it is on that day because three months and 12 days into the new year, that date demonstrates how many extra days a woman has to work to earn the same amount that a man earned for the same job the prior year, ending December 31.We wish it was the day when magically both men and women working in this country earned equal wages, but it just isn’t. And the numbers prove it.The Morning Ticker analyzed a Glassdoor data study of more than a half million jobs in this country and found the biggest gender pay gap was in computer programming. In those positions, men earn an average of 28.3 percent more than women working the same job.[bctt tweet=“Men earn an average of 28.3 percent more than women working the same job.”]The good news is that event planners, therapists and business coordinators earn about the same—whether the person in that slot is male or female. But on the average, women suffer with lower salaries in most all job categories and fields.“’In the U.S., men earn on average 24.1 percent higher base pay than women in Glassdoor salaries. That amounts to women earning about 76 cents per dollar earned by men,’” the statement reads. ‘However, once we compare workers with similar age, education and years of experience, that gap shrinks to 19.2 percent. Going further, when we compare workers with the same job title, employer and location, the U.S. gender pay gap is about 5.4 percent.’”The gender pay gap adds up to big money over time.“’That amounts to women earning about 94.6 cents per dollar earned by men,’ the statement continues. ‘At today’s real median earnings for full-time working women of $39,621, that is a pay loss of $2,140 per year or more than $64,100 over a 30-year career. For those who earn more than median wage, they could be losing a lot more each year. For example, if a woman earns $100,000 per year, she loses about $5,400 per year or more than $160,000 over the course of a 30-year career.”And six figures is nothing to sneeze at and could mean a down payment on a house or a chunk of cash to store away for retirement.Commenting in Fortune on the Glassdoor study, Bellstrom writes: “These stats also tell us something important about the larger pay gap. Census data tells us that the top jobs for women are low-paid careers like cashier and secretary. If men outnumber women in lucrative fields like programming and the top ranks of medicine—and those women who do make it into those jobs are paid substantially less than their male colleagues‚—is it any wonder that recent estimates suggest that it will take us another 117 years to close the global pay gap?”More than a century is way longer than the nine years from now that Take The Lead intends before we reach leadership parity. Take The Lead’s mission is to prepare, develop, inspire and propel women to take their fair and equal share of leadership positions across all sectors by 2025. It’s today’s women’s movement — a unique catalyst for women to embrace power and reach leadership parity for its 2025 goal.Also looking ahead, a booming industry set to be worth $30 billion by 2020 is the virtual reality/gaming business, where women in the workplace make up only 22 percent of the workforce and leadership.At the recent Game Developers Conference, Christina Heller, CEO and co-founder of VR Playhouse, said pay equity is growing for women in the workplace, but it is still not gender balanced.Venture Beat reported: “Even inside my own company, even though we have a woman at the helm, we still skew male,” Heller said. “A lot of the people who work at my company are guys. [bctt tweet=“For every position we have an opening for, we get 10 applications from men for every woman.”] That’s part of the challenge.”While gaming has been notoriously male-dominated territory and the vitriol of Gamergate brought that tension to a wider audience, Fortune, author Kristen Bellstrom writes that chefs and dentists are also a few of the many male-dominated fields where the men earn far more than the women in the same positions.Construction and building has also been historically a male field where women in the workplace are seen less often in leadership positions and also earn less. Applauding the top women leaders in the top 22 public building companies, Builder magazine writes: “A total of 17 out of 22—or more than 77 percent of—public companies on the 2015 BUILDER 100 list have at least one woman leader in the company, an achievement given the male-dominated history of home building.”Perhaps the construction industry is building up to something positive for women.“According to corporate governance documents, Lennar Corp., the second largest national builder in 2015, has five women in leadership roles. PulteGroup Inc. and Taylor Morrison Home Corp. ranked no. 3 and no. 7 in 2015, respectively, have four women leaders each. There are currently 21 women sitting on of the board of directors for 15 different building companies. Most—or 20 out of the 21— female board members are outside/independent directors, meaning they are not employees of the company and often come from a related or different industry to bring outside perspectives and interests to the table.”Speaking at a conference of black women leaders and entrepreneurs in New York for the Walker Legacy Power 50, a conference launched in 2009 and named after Madame C.J. Walker, the first female self-made millionaire in the United States and a hair care product innovator, was founder and CEO of the summit, Natalie Cofield. She applauded the women entrepreneurs, looked back on the history of black women leaders and ahead—to a century beyond.“A hundred years from now you never know who might be standing up here talking on a stage…I challenge us — this is about 100 years from now — will people remember that we gathered? Do you understand the importance of that?” Cofield asked. “The answer should be yes.“Commenting on the need for policy change to encourage all women to succeed author Olivia Lowenberg writes in Christian Science Monitor: “The growing prevalence of female entrepreneurs of all races didn’t happen by accident. Instead, it may be proof that legislation targeted at women and minority small-business owners is having an effect,” she writes.“But such policies can’t, and haven’t, solved all the challenges inherent to being a female business owner. Women business owners still face a significant wage gap and continually have smaller amounts of start-up capital than their male peers.“Women leaders will continue to count down until pay equity is achieved and women finally have equal pay for equal work.