Another year, another Equal Pay Day.

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A section of office space located at Colorado Ballet. [Photo by Siobhan Stocks-Lyons]

This year in the U.S., National Equal Pay Day fell on Apr. 12, 2016. This date varies every year signifying the amount of time that women must work into a new year to earn the same pay that man made in the previous year. Currently, women receive 79 cents for every dollar a man makes and this number only decreases depending on one’s race. Equal Pay Day is a yearly wakeup call to our nation that we continue to grapple with providing equal pay for equal work regardless of gender.

CNN reported a study from the Institute for Women’s Policy Research that women will not earn equal pay until 2059, or possibly longer due to factors such as location, age, race, and education level.

In 2016, for every dollar a man makes, a White woman makes 79 cents, a Black woman makes 60 cents, and a Latino woman makes only 55 cents. In 2015, Equal Pay Day fell on Apr. 14. A woman made 78 cents for every dollar a man made on that date. In comparison to 2015, women are only earning 1 cent more.

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Kara Ellis, University of Denver freshman. Location: outside of Sturm Hall at DU. Thursday, Apr., 21, 2016. What measures need to be taken to end the gender pay gap in our nation? “There needs to be some way of monitoring how people are paid and making sure it is equal. Ensure that there is equal pay for equal work.”

What measures have to be taken to end the gender pay gap in our nation?

In a nation that is said to be constantly advancing and becoming more racially, ethnically and sexually accepting with each given year, the ideology that women don’t deserve the same access or benefits in life as a man does has struggled to advance with the rest of our society.

The norms of women that were founded at the same time as the ancient Greek myths are still prevalent today. The idea of “personal law”, being the expectation of women to handle the familial, domestic, and reproductive side of life has been the main focus of cultures since the beginning. Society has advanced for women since those times, the images of the domestic “housewife” still remain.

Moving forward, the question remains, how can our nation attempt to close the pay gap between genders for good?

Tyler Payson

Tyler Payson, University of Denver freshman. Location: in front of Sturm Hall at DU. Wednesday, Apr., 20, 2016. What measures need to be taken to end the gender pay gap in our nation? “We must open up more opportunities to women because a lot of companies will not hire women due to company hegemonies of always having men as the CEO’s and executives.”

Studies have shown that women need to be placed into positions of power within companies. Women offer different perspectives and ideas into a male dominated workforce, often bringing up new and valid topics that could potentially yield great progress for companies.

“Women’s pressure to raise the family, especially in the 50’s, inhibited them from entering full-time into the workplace and today we must open up more opportunity to women in companies where the hegemony of males as the only CEO’s and executives are present,” said University of Denver freshman, Tyler Payson. “We need to go back and educate men and women equally from the beginning.”

Women are capable of succeeding in the same positions that men are placed into, but few women are given that chance to prove themselves. Political theorist, John Stuart Mill brought up the point that there is no way women can be determined inferior if they haven’t been given a fair chance.

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Kelsey Lindquist, University of Denver sophomore. Location: Outside of Driscoll University Center. Thursday, Apr., 21, 2016. What measures need to be taken to end the gender pay gap in our nation? “Companies need universal starting salaries, with raises being given solely upon the quality of an employee’s work, not their gender.”

President Obama delivered a speech at a press conference on Equal Pay Day to discuss the inequality in pay among genders and races. President Obama went on to say, “If we truly value fairness, then America should be a level playing field where everyone who works hard gets a chance to succeed, and that’s good for America because we don’t want some of our best players on the sidelines.”

 

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