If gap was closed, Kentucky women could afford 1.5 years’ worth of food, 14 months of rent or more than 2,400 gallons of gas annually
WASHINGTON (April 8, 2013) — A new analysis reveals that women who are employed full time in Kentucky are paid 79 cents for every dollar paid to men, amounting to a yearly gap in wages of $8,928. Collectively, this amounts to a loss of nearly $5 billion in income every year – money that could strengthen the state economy and provide critical support to the more than 217,000 Kentucky households headed by women.
The analysis was conducted by the National Partnership for Women & Families, based on U.S. Census Bureau data.
In Kentucky, on average, a woman who holds a full-time job is paid $32,684 per year, while a man who holds a full-time job is paid $41,612 per year. As a group, women who are employed full time in Kentucky lose approximately $5 billion every year because of the wage gap.
The analysis found that 217,294 households in Kentucky are headed by women. About 40 percent of those households, or 85,831 households, have incomes that fall below the poverty level.
If the wage gap were eliminated, a working woman in Kentucky would have enough money for approximately:
♦ 78 more weeks of food (1.5 years’ worth)
♦ Eight more months of mortgage and utilities payments
♦ 14 more months of rent
♦ 2,477 additional gallons of gas
The National Partnership also analyzed the wage gap in the country’s 50 largest metropolitan areas, including Louisville.
In the Louisville metro area, on average, a woman who holds a full-time job is paid $36,327 per year, while a man who holds a full-time job is paid $45,009 per year. This means that women in the Louisville area are paid 81 cents for every dollar paid to men in the area, amounting to a yearly gap of $8,682 between men and women who work full time.
As a group, women who are employed full time in the Louisville area lose approximately $1.6 billion each year because of the wage gap. Nearly 68,000 households in the Louisville metro area are headed by women. About 34 percent of those households, or 23,375 households, have incomes that fall below the poverty level.
“This new analysis illustrates the great harm to families, states and metropolitan areas caused by the pervasive gender-based wage gap,” said Debra L. Ness, president of the National Partnership for Women & Families. “With most women serving as essential breadwinners for their families, the loss of this critical income has devastating consequences.”
Nationally, women who hold full-time jobs are paid 77 cents for every dollar paid to men who hold full-time jobs. African American women and Latinas fare worse, being paid 64 cents and just 55 cents, respectively, for every dollar paid to white, non-Hispanic men. This wage gap has been closing at a rate of less than half a cent per year since passage of the Equal Pay Act in 1963. At that rate, it is estimated that women will not be paid equally for more than 40 years.
“Fifty years ago this year, the Equal Pay Act became law. Yet a punishing wage gap persists for women across the country,” Ness said. “We must do more to close the wage gap, which is present in every part of the country and every industry, and affects workers with every level of education. Congress and the president can and must do more. We are urging Congress to prioritize passage of the Paycheck Fairness Act and urging President Obama to take executive action to ensure that federal contractors do not discriminate in pay.”
The National Partnership’s research on the wage gap was released the day before Equal Pay Day – which marks how far into the new year women must work in order to catch up with what men were paid the year before. The analysis uses data from the U.S. Census Bureau and spans all 50 states and the country’s 50 largest metropolitan areas. Reports for each locality, along with state rankings are available at www.NationalPartnership.org/Gap.