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Latina Women Are Working Too Hard for Too Little

Today is Latina Equal Pay Day, which marks how much longer into the next year Latina women have to work to be paid what their white, non-Hispanic male counterparts were paid in one year. One year, eleven months, and two days. Take a second and let that soak in. We are in the year 2017 and this level of inequality is still with us. And based on the Trump administration’s priorities, it’s up to us to fix it.

Pay inequality is an issue across race and gender, but Latina women suffer more than any other demographic of women in terms of the wage gap. Latina women’s paychecks barely equate to half of a white man’s, only 54 cents per dollar. The financial impact of this wage gap is shameful. Our new factsheet, Equal Pay for Latinas, shows that:

  • Over the course of a 40-year career, the typical Latina loses $1,056,120, which means she would need to work 73.5 years to make what white, non-Hispanic men make in 40 years.
  • Latinas experience a wage gap at every education level and it persists for Latinas of all ages.
  • Central American, Mexican, and Dominican women face the most severe wage gap within Latina subgroups.
  • Latinas’ wage gap has barely budged in 30 years.
  • The five worst states for Latinas’ lifetime losses due to the wage gap are The District of Columbia, New Jersey, California, Maryland, and Connecticut.
  • Immigrant Latinas face an even larger wage gap than Latinas overall.

One would think that these numbers would push the federal government to promote and encourage practices that prevent pay discrimination. Alas, no. The Trump Administration has been moving in the opposite direction. Rather than working to fix or prevent these numbers, the Trump Administration put a halt on equal pay data collection, which requires companies to disclose what they pay their employees by job category, sex, race, and ethnicity. So not only are we fighting to close the wage gap for Latinas, we have to fight even see disparity in the first place. That is why we are launching a new petition to push the Trump Administration to preserve equal pay data. If you believe in pay equality, sign the petition. This data is critical to our understanding of wage inequality by race and gender. We cannot let the Trump Administration take that away from us. It is time that we recognize the extra labor Latinas have to put forth, well into the next year, and preserve our collective ability to fight. And if you’re interested in additional solutions to close the wage gap, check out the Paycheck Fairness Act and the dozens of policy solutions that can, and will, make a difference for workers and their families.