You Know What April 17 is: Equal Pay Day

It's April 17, so you know what that means . . .

Wait, what? It's tax day? What the blazes is that?

It's obviously Equal Pay Day, which the nonprofit National Partnership for Women & Families is marking with data showing a wide gender wage gap in California.

Women in the Golden State are paid 84 cents for every dollar a man here earns, amounting to a yearly gap in wages of $8,151, according to the advocacy group's report, which ranks California's wage gap the second smallest in the nation. Still, that deficit is the annual equivalent of 1,914 gallons of gas, 7 months of rent, or food for 1.2 years.

African-American women and Latinas in California are paid $7,415 and $21,427 less than all men in the state, according to the analysis, which is available for all states here.

"This new analysis illustrates just how much harm the wage gap does to women and families throughout the country, and especially to women of color where the gap between the wages paid to women and men is staggering," says National Partnership President Debra L. Ness from her Washington, D.C. office. "With state economies struggling and women increasingly serving as the sole or co-breadwinners for their families, tens of thousands of dollars in lost wages each year takes a tremendous toll."

The partnership found 26.3 percent of California households headed by women are currently living below the poverty level.

Nationally, women working full time are paid just 77 cents for every dollar paid to their male counterparts, despite the Equal Pay Act in 1963. The partnership advocates new legislation, the Paycheck Fairness Act, which would close loopholes in the Equal Pay Act and establish stronger workplace protections for women. It has passed in the past two Congresses but fallen short in the Senate. The bill is back before Congress now.


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