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#DemandMore: It's Black Women's Equal Pay Day

Black women are one of the most educated and politically engaged groups in the United States. But their earnings don’t reflect that fact.

Last year, women made about 80 percent ($.80 cents on the $1) of what men earned, according to the Pew Research Center. But “white and Asian women have narrowed the wage gap with white men to a much greater degree than Black women.”

When compared to white men, on average, Black women are paid approximately $.63 cents on the dollar, which is 38 percent less than white men; and are paid 21 percent less than white women.

Equal Pay Day for all women is recognized each year in April. This year, Black Women’s Equal Pay Day is recognized on August 7. A Black woman, working full-time, had to work eight additional months to be paid what the typical white man was paid at the end of December 2017.

“While August 7 is reserved for ‘Black Women’s Equal Pay Day,’ it should be recognized as ‘How Black Women are Underpaid Day,'” said DiversityInc COO Carolynn Johnson.

“Although much corporate programming work has been done to solve this problem, the Institute for Women’s Policy Research reports the results are not getting better in fact, we are going backwards.

“Companies that have begun to dissect the intersectionality of gender and race will be better positioned to deal with the challenges Black women and Latinas face.

Sodexo placed in the 2018 DiversityInc Hall of Fame, and Accenture broke into the Top 10 this year. Both companies have research on this subject and are leading the charge in taking action.”

Black women are being encouraged to make their pay demands clear at work, as a consumer and at the ballot box.

For example, in December, Democratic candidate Doug Jones defeated Republican candidate Roy Moore in the Alabama Senate special election, thanks to Black women. Almost every Black woman who cast a vote 98 percent voted for Jones.

And, following Moore’s defeat, a record number of Black women decided to run for office across the state.

In recognition of Black Women’s Equal Pay Day, a “Social Media Storm” will take place at 2 p.m. ET using the hashtags #DemandMore as well as #blackwomensequalpay allowing women to share their stories.

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