When Women Succeed, America Succeeds
Today, April 8th, 2014, is Equal Pay Day. This event marks when, more than three months into the year, women’s wages finally catch up to what men were paid in the past year. Women still earn only 77 cents on average for every dollar earned by men. This wage disparity costs some women as much as $11,000 a year- enough to make seven mortgage payments, buy 89 weeks of groceries, or 3,000 gallons of gas.
Equal pay is not only a women’s issue, but a family issue. When women bring home less pay, it means they have less for the needs of their families- food, rent, child care, and medical care. Women are either the primary or co-breadwinner in two-thirds of families with children, so their earnings are vital to the strength of American families.
Congress has provided racial and ethnic minorities with the protections they deserve against wage and workplace discrimination, and it is unacceptable to leave women behind. That is why I am proud to be a co-sponsor of H.R. 377, the Paycheck Fairness Act. This act would provide women with the legal tools necessary to fight against wage discrimination in their workplace, as well as provide assistance to businesses to help them with their equal pay practices. It is time that we honor the hard work of women across the nation with equal pay, because when women succeed, America succeeds.