Opinion: It’s time to close the pay gap

Lora Leigh Luquet

Reporter

My mother has worked in one of the most male-dominated fieldsfor 34 years: sports journalism. For most of my childhood, she spent the majority of her time at sporting events, crammed in a press box writing diligent notes and interviewing athletes. 

Despite all of her hard work and accolades she’s received, she may never get the pay she deserves. 

It’s 2020, and women are still receiving unequal pay for equal work. According to a Pew Research Center analysis of median hourly earnings of both full and part-time workers in the United States, women earned 85% of what men earned in 2018.

According to the Institute for Women’s Policy Research, it will take until 2059 for white women to finally catch up with men.It’s research also stated black women will have to wait until 2130, and Hispanic women will have to wait until 2224. 

My mother is the strongest, smartest woman I have ever met. I am lucky to have inherited even a little bit of her writing talent, and I am using that talent to follow in her footsteps. It pains me to know she may never receive the compensation she deserves, and it scares me to know that I may not either.

All hope is not lost, however. A labor law for the U.S., known as the Paycheck Fairness Act, was introduced to Congress in 1997, but Congress has yet to pass the Paycheck Fairness Act into law, thereby further contributing to discrimination in the workplace.

Until the Paycheck Fairness Act is passed, single mothers continue to struggle with providing for their children. Bright, intelligent women who work harder than anyone in their field continue to be passed over for promotions or pay raises. 

Young women going into college will choose unchallenging majors with a fear that even if they do follow the path they really want to, they will still never get the pay they deserve. 

My mother will never get the pay she deserves, and I may not either.

It is time for the pay disparity to finally be taken seriously.

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