Take Action to Close the Wage Gap This Latina Equal Pay Day

.Nationally, Latinas working full time, year round are typically paid only 54 cents for every dollar paid to their white, non-Hispanic male counterparts. Today, November 2nd, we recognize Latina Equal Pay Day, marking how far into the year that Latinas have to work in order to earn what their White male counterparts earned the previous year.

That means that Latinas must work an entire extra ten months to earn the same wages as White men. We’ll let that sink in for a moment.

Those eleven months spent working without pay equity have a direct impact on the economic security of  Latinas and their families. This pay gap equals the loss of roughly $26,095 each year for Latinas and their families.

There are a number of reasons that the wage gap exists. Women are more likely to be caregivers for children and family members, yet without supportive workplace policies of paid leave or affordable child care, women are more likely to work part time or leave the workforce entirely. Additionally, hiring practices such as requiring salary history can lead to pay disparities for women. Negotiating practices have also been shown to contribute to the wage gap. Even when factoring out education, occupation, and experiences, an “unknown” factor still shows that discrimination is a cause of pay inequality.

That’s why we need legislative action to chip away at some of the causes of pay inequality. There are currently four bills pending in the Ohio Legislature that aim to contribute to the close of the gender wage gap and address wage discrimination. Take action now to help us advance these critical pay equity bills:

  • HB 138 (Smith, Boyd) – Wage Discrimination: Creates an equal pay discrimination hotline where workers could anonymously report instances of alleged wage discrimination. This bill was referred to the House Economic Development, Commerce & Labor Committee in March, but has not yet had a single hearing. Contact the Committee Chair Representative Ron Young, and urge him to hold hearings on the bill.
  • HB 180 (Clyde, Howse) – Equal Pay: Establishes the Ohio Equal Pay Act to create protections for closing the wage gap, such as prohibiting an employer from retaliating against employees who discuss their salaries or wages. Contact the Committee Chair Representative Louis Blessing III, and urge him to hold hearings on the bill.
  • HB 403 (Howse, Kelly) – Equal Pay: Creates a Gender Pay Disparity Task Force to address pay inequality. The bill was just introduced yesterday and has not yet been assigned to a Committee. Contact your Representative and urge them to support the bill. 
  • SB 174 (Tavares) – Wage Requirements: Enacts the Fair and Acceptable Income Required (FAIR) Act, which would update state laws to help protect against wage discrimination. It was referred to the Senate Transformation, Commerce & Workforce Committee in September, but has not yet had a single hearing. Contact the Committee Chair Representative Frank LaRose, and urge him to hold hearings on the bill.