Recently, there has been a New Yorker article about the firing of former New York Times executive editor Jill Abramson where it was revealed that MS Abramson was fired after she raised concerns that her male predecessor was paid more than she was paid.
This case, obviously amplifies a bigger, underlying national problem. According to the latest data from U.S Census, the wage gap has not changed much since 2002. According to the figures, a typical American female employee working full time year round earns about 77% of what her male colleague working in a similar position earns. This means that for every dollar a male employee earns, his female colleague working in a similar position earns 77 cents.
To make matters worse, colored women earn even less because of gender discrimination. For instance, black women are paid 69 cents for every dollar paid to black men and 64 cents for every dollar paid to the white men. For Latinas, they earn about 54 cents for every dollar paid to white men and 58 cents for every dollar paid to all men.
Sadly, all this is in spite of U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission’s declaration that men and women in the same job (not necessarily identical jobs) need to be paid equally.
So what is the main cause of this wage gap apart from gender and racial discrimination?
According to Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, one of the main reasons for the wage gap could be due to the fact that women are more likely to work lesser hours than their male counterparts. Also, professional and academic qualification may have played a role in creating the current mess.
Another reason being advanced by Pay Equity & Discrimination is that most of the jobs are predominantly being managed by men. Other factors such as poor negotiation skills and failing to ask around are to blame for the pay disparity.