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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                                        CONTACT: Emily Hecker
Tuesday, April 10, 2018                                                                                               202/371-1999
 

Moms Leader Marks Equal Pay Day 2018:
‘We Can’t Wait Any Longer’

 
Statement from Kristin Rowe-Finkbeiner, CEO and executive director of MomsRising, an online and on-the-ground organization of more than one million mothers and their families, on Equal Pay Day 2018:
 
“Today is Equal Pay Day, which marks how far women in the United States have to work into 2018 to catch up to what men, on average, were paid in 2017 alone. This frustrating annual ritual is a reminder that our country still has a long way to go in closing the wage gap, reaching economic equality and improving financial security for working women and their families.
 
“The Equal Pay Act was enacted more than 50 years ago, yet women are only paid, on average, 80 cents to every dollar paid to men. Women of color experience an even more punishing wage gap: Black women are paid just 63 cents for every dollar paid to white, non-Hispanic men; Latinas just 54 cents; Native American women just 57 cents; and Asian-American and Pacific Islander women just 87 cents, with some Asian-American subgroups paid much less. Mothers face big wage hits as well, earning an average of 71 cents to a white dad’s dollar. Disaggregating the data shows that single mothers and mothers of color see even greater wage hits.
 
“The wage gap is terrible for families – it hurts women’s income, purchasing power and upward mobility. At a time when many moms are the primary or only breadwinners for their families, this persistent wage discrimination is devastating. But the wage gap isn’t just bad for women and moms  it’s also bad for our economy. When women lose income, it’s harder for them to start and sustain their own businesses and make the purchases that fuel our consumer-driven economy.
 
“Many write off the wage gap as a consequence of women’s career choices, but that’s simply not the case. Women of all education levels, occupations and industries are paid less than their male counterparts. And our country’s workplace policies – which deny many workers paid family and medical leave, affordable child care and earned sick days – often force women to make choices that hamper their career trajectory and earning potential.
 
“It’s time for lawmakers to take action. The administration needs to show its commitment to fair pay by urging the EEOC to implement a replacement for EEO-1, an important pay data collection initiative that helped create transparency around wages and prevent race and gender gaps from being ignored. Congress should pass the Paycheck Fairness Act, a much-needed update to the Equal Pay Act that would increase pay transparency and strengthen penalties for wage discrimination. We also need family-friendly workplace policies  including paid family and medical leave, affordable child care, earned sick days and a living wage  to help close the wage gap and boost our national economy.
  
“When women suffer, our whole country suffers. We can’t wait any longer to do what’s right for our families, our businesses and our economy. It’s time to close the wage gap once and for all.”
 

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MomsRising.org is an on-the-ground and online grassroots organization of more than a million people who are working to increase family economic security, decrease discrimination against women and moms, and to build a nation where businesses and families can thrive. Established in 2006, MomsRising and its members are organizing and speaking out to improve public policy and to change the national dialogue on issues that are critically important to America’s families, including criminal justice reform, immigration policy reform, and gun safety. MomsRising is working for paid family and medical leave, affordable, high quality childcare and early learning, and for an end to the wage and hiring discrimination which penalizes women — particularly moms and women of color — and so many others. MomsRising advocates for access to healthy food for all kids, health care for all, earned sick days, and breastfeeding rights so that all children can have a healthy start. MomsRising maintains a Spanish language website: MamásConPoder.org. Sign up online at www.MomsRising.org — and follow us on our blog, and on Twitter and Facebook.