On Native Women’s Equal Pay Day, We Demand Congress Act to Dismantle Colonial Legacies and Promote Economic Justice for All
"Year after year, Native Women’s Equal Pay Day serves as a painful reminder that the wage discrimination Native Women face is an extreme, persistent and incredibly damaging reminder of the legacy of the horrific colonialism Native peoples have endured. Right now in the United States, Native women overall are paid just 55 cents for each dollar paid to white, non-Hispanic men. Native women working full-time, year-round are paid just 59 cents on the dollar, and women in some tribes are paid even less, with many earning less than half what white, non-Hispanic men are paid. We cannot allow this gap to persist. We need bold action to end it.
“When Native women are shortchanged on their paychecks, it robs Native families and communities of the resources they need to thrive. This extreme wage gap traps many Native women in poverty, since the majority are primary breadwinners for their families. The wage gap also leaves many Native women without the necessary resources to safely escape domestic violence. Addressing these injustices is long overdue.
“This devastating gap is a symptom of the ongoing legacies of colonialism, genocide and anti-Indigenous racism in our country. To truly dismantle this systemic discrimination, we need comprehensive action. We will continue to fight the wage discrimination Native women face until we close this disgraceful wage gap once and for all.”
– Statement of Taylor Austin, Campaign Manager for Workplace Justice, MomsRising
“Today and every day, we must honor the sovereignty, traditions and voices of Native communities and fight for a future where everyone can thrive. But at the current rate of progress, we won’t close the wage gap Native women face for another century. That is shameful and unacceptable.
“Congress must pass the Paycheck Fairness Act, which offers stronger legal protections against wage discrimination. We also need the FAMILY Act and the Healthy Families Act to become law, to guarantee paid family and medical leave and paid sick days for all. These policies together would help combat wage discrimination while also boosting families, businesses, and our economy. All of these policies are badly needed to root out discrimination and inequality in our workplaces and country. That should be a top priority for every lawmaker.”
– Statement of Kristin Rowe-Finkbeiner, Executive Director and CEO, MomsRising