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© National Committee
on Pay Equity
Next Equal Pay Day: Tuesday, April 12, 2016
About Equal Pay Day

NCPE is registered with Amazon Smile, so online shopping through this Web site provides us with financial support. Just visit and select National Committee on Pay Equity as the 501(c)(3) organization you wish to support, and NCPE will receive 0.5 of the price of eligible purchases. For more information, see complete program details.


Equal Pay in 2059

Last year the Institute for Women’s Policy Research estimated, based on research, that women wouldn’t receive equal pay until 2058. Based on the earnings figures released by the Census Bureau on Sept. 16, 2015, that date has been extended a year. IWPR now estimates that women will not receive equal pay until 2059.

While the gap between men's and women's wages has narrowed gradually over time, it has remained stagnant this century, as this graph from the Census Bureau shows (Total and Full-Time, Year-Round Workers With Earnings by Sex: 1967 to 2011, pdf). This illustrates more than ever the need to strengthen and update the Equal Pay Act of 1963 by passing the Paycheck Fairness Act.

Gender wage gap again narrows slightly, remains statistically unchanged

The gender wage gap narrowed by just .3 of a percent in the last year, showing that women earned 78.6 percent of what men earned in 2014, compared to 78.3 percent in 2013, according to data released by the Census Bureau on Sept. 16, 2015 based on the median earnings of all full-time, year-round workers. Women’s earnings were $39,621, while men’s were $50,383. Rounding off the figures shows women’s earnings now at 79 percent of men’s, compared to 78 percent last year.

Most women of color lost ground in the last year, particularly African American women, whose median earnings fell from $34,089 to $33,533. Their earnings, compared to those of all men, dropped from 68.1 to 66.6 percent. Latinas’ median earnings rose slightly, from $30,209 to $30,293, but dropped compared to earnings of all men from 60.4 to 60.1 percent. Only Asian American women showed gains, with their median salary increasing from $42,335 to $46,334 or 91.9 percent of the earnings of all men, compared to 84.6 percent last year.

”The female-to-male earnings ratio has not shown a statistically significant annual increase since 2007,” according to a Census Bureau press release. The National Committee on Pay Equity's The Wage Gap Over Time shows how little the wage gap has changed in this century


What Gender Wage Gap? 

The gender wage gap figure used by the National Committee on Pay Equity has been coming under fire as being politically motivated, at best, and downright inaccurate, at worst.  

NCPE’s wage gap figure, showing that women earn 79 cents for every dollar men earn, is based on the most recent Census data of the median salaries of all full-time, year-round workers in the United States. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), using a different data set and calculating the wage gap based on weekly salaries, shows women earning 82 cents for every dollar men earn. And a multitude of reports and articles have sliced and diced pay data—by occupation, locality, age—to show a variety of gender wage gaps.  

The Census data is used by NCPE because it includes bonuses, not included in the BLS data, and its data has been available for a longer period of time than the BLS data. (See for gender wage gap figures since 1960.)  

When The Washington Post fact-checker Glenn Kessler criticized the Census figure on April 9, 2014 , he was quickly rebutted by the Institute for Women’s Policy Research (IWPR). 

NCPE’s gender wage gap figure is an aggregate. It does not show men and women doing the same work or in the same jobs. But it does show changes over time, with progress in narrowing the gap in the 1990s and little change in this century. In The Status of Women in the States: 2015--Employment and Earnings the IWPR projects that if current trends continue, the wage gap will remain until 2058 and won’t close until the next century in some states.

If we didn't have a wage gap, we wouldn't need this coupon!

  OFCCP Tackles Wage Discrimination:
The Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs of the Department of Labor has issued a 4-page fact sheet "Advancing Equal Pay Enforcement: More Effective and Transparent Procedures for Investigating Pay Discrimination" outlining its recent actions intended to identify and remedy wage discrimination.  

Myth Busting the
Gender Pay Gap

A senior program advisor at the Department of Labor’s Office of Federal Contract Compliance Program details and busts five myths about the gender wage gap.

President Obama Details Efforts
To Help Women Economically

At a White House Forum on Women and the Economy on April 6, 2012, President Obama announced the release of the new report by the White House Council on Women and Girls, "Keeping America's Women Moving Forward," that details the progress the administration has made in initiatives to help women economically. He also acknowledged the continued pay gap, saying, "Overall, a woman with a college degree doing the same work as a man will earn hundreds of thousands of dollars less over the course of her career." And in an op-ed last week, he emphasized the importance of fixing that, writing "Closing this pay gap -- ending this pay discrimination -- is about far more than simple fairness, it's about strengthening families, communities and our entire economy."

The White House released the Equal Pay Task Force Accomplishments Report: Fighting for Fair Pay in the Workplace (pdf). The report details the significant progress that the Task Force has made to fight pay discrimination – including improving inter-agency coordination and collaboration to ensure that the full weight of the federal government is focused on closing the gender pay gap once and for all. 

The Department of Labor’s Women’s Bureau published two brochures to educate employees regarding their rights under the existing equal pay laws and enable employers to understand their obligations:
>> A Guide to Women's Equal Pay Rights (pdf)
>> An Employer's Guide to Equal Pay (pdf)

Winners of the Equal Pay App Challenge The Department of Labor invited software developers to use publicly available data and resources to create applications for smart phones and other devices. The apps help provide access to basic information – e.g. typical salary ranges and skill level requirements for particular positions, advice on how to negotiate appropriate pay.

Polling Data Shows Overwhelming Support
of Paycheck Fairness Act

In a 2010 nationwide poll of registered voters, 84% supported "a new law that would provide women more tools to get fair pay in the workplace." When poll respondents were told that the "law will also make it harder for employers to justify paying different wages for the same work and ensure that businesses that break the law compensate women fairly," 72% strongly supported such a law. This support was consistent across lines of gender, race, geographic regions, and political parties. See data from the National Partnership for Women & Families.

Join the
Fair Pay Campaign to support pay equity legislation

The Fair Pay Campaign is led by the American Association of University Women, the Feminist Majority Foundation, Legal Momentum, the National Organization for Women, the National Partnership for Women and Families, and the National Women's Law Center, with 250 other local, state, and national groups -- including NCPE -- joining them.

GAO Report on Gender Pay Differences

At a Nov. 3, 2011 press conference, Sen. Bob Casey, chairman of the Joint Economic Committee, and Rep. Carolyn Maloney, former JEC chair, discussed the findings of a new GAO report, “Gender Pay Differences: Progress Made, but Women Remain Overrepresented Among Low-wage Workers.” The report about low-wage and less-educated workers shows that even in low-wage jobs women, who make up the majority of low-wage workers, earn less than their male counterparts. NCPE Chair Michele Leber was one of the speakers at the press conference.

Updated November 12, 2015          National Committee on Pay Equity