State Rep. Janine Boyd (D-Cleveland) today raised awareness about the wage gap for Black women and their families by recognizing Black Women’s Equal Pay Day, the day in the new year to which Black women must work to earn what white, non-Hispanic men made in the previous year alone.
“This is my third term as a legislator in the Ohio General Assembly. For five years, my colleagues and I have been talking about opportunities to close the wage gap. For five years, I have introduced legislation such as House Bill (HB) 91, the Paid Family and Medical Leave Insurance Program—which would provide 12 weeks of family and medical leave benefits that can be used to address a serious health condition, to care for a family member or to bond with a new child—and HB 221—which establishes an anonymous wage discrimination hotline. We need to stop talking about wage disparities and start acting to ensure that all women are paid fairly for their work,” said Rep. Boyd.
The average Black working woman in Ohio is paid only 64 percent of what her white male counterpart is paid, regardless of educational background and job description. Her median pay for a working a full time job amounts to a yearly wage gap of $18,797 less per year in median earnings.
“On this Black Women’s Equal Pay Day, I urge my colleagues across the aisle to work with us to pass legislation that increase women’s earnings. This will make it easier to combine work and family responsibilities and improve not just women’s economic security, but Ohio families’ economic security. Such policies will also improve Ohio’s economy, which is one important priority we all share,” added Rep. Boyd.
Ohio ranks among the worst states in the nation in equal pay for Black women. The amount of money lost adds up to more than 23 months of rent and more than three years’ worth of food for a family.