Inequality, Women’s Equal Pay

July 9 Is Now National Black Women’s Equal Pay Day

Senators Rev. Raphael Warnock (D-GA), Laphonza Butler (D-CA), and Cory Booker (D-NJ), along with Congresswoman Alma S. Adams, Ph.D. (D-NC), make sure an important subject doesn't go neglected.

Introduced as a resolution by U.S. Senators Rev. Raphael Warnock (D-GA), Laphonza Butler (D-CA), and Cory Booker (D-NJ), July 9 is now National Black Women’s Equal Pay Day in an effort to acknowledge the disparity in wages received by Black women across America. The day is reflective of how long into 2024 it would take for Black women to work to make what White and non-Hispanic men were paid in 2023.

The resolution was introduced in 2021 by Warnock, a longtime champion of equal pay and dignity to work, and Congresswoman Dr. Alma S. Adams (D-NC).

“There is no such thing as equality for some. Black women deserve the same opportunities to earn the same paycheck as their neighbors across the state and the country. I will always be an advocate and a champion for equal, fair pay for all people,” Warnock said in an official statement. “I’m honored to join Senator Butler, Senator Booker, and Rep. Adams in introducing this resolution to recognize Black Women’s Equal Pay Day and the many contributions Black women have made to this country and continue to make every single day.”

Set to be observed annually, National Black Women’s Equal Pay Day is used to help women arm one another with the knowledge and power to advocate for themselves for the pay that they deserve. The National Women’s Law Center reports that Black women are paid 69 cents for every dollar that their white counterparts make. That price was 45 cents for every dollar made in 1967.

“When we think about pay and equity, it has such a trickle effect on affordability of homeownership, investments, [and] the wealth gap,” said advocate Sara Taylor. “We’re going to have those difficult conversations, but our goal is that we leave here with strategies.”

During a July 9 event held in Rochester, New York, Taylor and other speakers helped to equip a group of women take inventory of their skills and values while teaching them ways to show up for themselves at work.

Throughout the day, attendees participated in various exercises centered around bringing awareness to the new day. At one point, women in attendance learned more about current legislation such as the Paycheck Fairness Act and the Bringing an End to Harassment by Enhancing Accountability and Rejecting Discrimination, or BE HEARD, in the Workplace Act.

Earlier this year, President Joe Biden proclaimed March 12 as National Equal Pay Day after it was launched in 1996 by the National Committee on Pay Equity. Similarly, the day was created to demonstrate wage inequities between women and men. However, National Black Women’s Equal Pay Day focuses solely on the pay disparities faced by African American women nationwide.

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