This year, April 14 is the day that symbolizes how much extra a woman must work in 2015 to make the same as a man did in 2014.
According to the latest census data, women working full-time earn just 78 cents for every dollar earned by men, amounting to a yearly wage gap of $10,876. Over a working career, that gap means hundreds of thousands of dollars in reduced earnings, lower pensions and fewer Social Security benefits.
“Women today make up 47 percent of the workforce and women in 40 percent of America’s families are the primary or sole breadwinner,” says IAM General Vice President Diane Babineaux. “Lower pay is hurting families and is an injustice to women. It’s been more than 50 years since the Equal Pay Act was passed and it’s time to finish the job and pass the Paycheck Fairness Act.”
The Paycheck Fairness Act closes loopholes in the Equal Pay Act of 1963 that was supposed to close the pay gap and protect women in the workforce. Repeated attempts to pass the Paycheck Fairness Act in Congress have met stiff resistance by GOP lawmakers. In 2014, Republican senators, including four female GOP senators, voted unanimously against it.
Union membership is still the best way to ensure equal pay for women and minorities.