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AAPI Women's Equal Pay Day – May 3, 2023

The A.A.P.I. Women’s Equal Pay Day is observed on May 3. This symbolic day represents how long into the year women must labor to get the same wage as men did the year before. This data is based on the most recent U.S. Census numbers, which reveal that the average full-time woman earns just 83% of what a full-time male earns. Equal Pay Day was founded in 1996 by the National Committee on Pay Equity (N.C.P.E.) to raise awareness about the income disparity between men and women. However, because pay disparities vary widely between communities, additional Equal Pay Days have been added to the calendar to represent the fact that many women must labor considerably longer into the year to catch up to males.

History of AAPI Women's Equal Pay Day

Although many women, including women of color, immigrants, and poor and working-class women, have worked outside the house or been paid for their labor since the country’s founding, the realm of paid employment has traditionally lived in the American psyche as part of men’s public sphere. Women were assumed to exist in the “private” realm, performing unpaid work, until WWII, when record numbers of women entered the workforce.

Recognizing that women had largely replaced men in the war labor industry, the National War Labor Board urged industry leaders to make “adjustments that [would] equalize wage or salary rates paid to females with rates paid to males for comparable quality and quantity of work on the same or similar operation” in 1942.

The National Committee on Pay Parity, a collaboration of women’s and civil rights organizations, labor unions, professional associations, and people seeking to abolish sex and race-based wage discrimination and achieve pay equity, first commemorated the symbolic day in 1996.

In the United States, the battle over equal pay has raged for generations. Several laws have been established to promote the concept of equal pay for men and women.

John F. Kennedy signed the Equal Pay Act into law in 1963, and it was heralded as a “great step forward” for women in the workplace. Discrimination based on race, origin, color, religion, or sex was illegal in the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Pregnant employees were protected by the Pregnancy Discrimination Act of 1978, and the Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993 permitted parents of either gender to take time off. President Barack Obama signed the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, which restored some anti-discrimination safeguards that had been removed in a 2007 Supreme Court judgment and provided corporations with incentives to make their payrolls more equitable.

AAPI Women's Equal Pay Day timeline

1963
Pay Gap Advances

The Equal Pay Act is enacted, establishing equal pay for equal labor.

1964
Pay Disparity is Illegal

The Civil Rights Act of 1964 makes it illegal to discriminate against people based on their race.

1996
Symbolic Day

The National Committee on Pay Parity, a coalition of women's civil rights organizations, and many others established Women Equal Pay.

2020
International Equal Pay Day

The United Nations initially observed Equal Pay Day on September 18, with the U.N. estimating that women earn 23% less than males globally.

AAPI Women's Equal Pay Day FAQs

Is A.A.P.I. Women’s Equal Pay Day observed on the same day every year?

National Equal Wage Day is observed every year on a day in March or April to raise awareness of pay disparities between men and women for the same work. The day represents how many days a woman must work to earn the same amount as a man doing the same job.

What is the wage disparity between men and women?

Women still earn 83 cents for every dollar earned by males working full-time in the United States, and the ramifications of this disparity affect women throughout their lives. The wage disparity continues throughout retirement, with women receiving less in Social Security and pensions as a result of their lower lifetime earnings.

Why are women paid less than men?

Pay disparities are caused by occupational segregation (more men working in higher-paying industries and women working in lower-paying industries), ineffective equal pay legislation, women’s overall paid working hours, and labor-market entry barriers (such as education level and single parenting rate).

How to Observe AAPI Women's Equal Pay Day

  1. Raise awareness through social media

    Raise awareness of the gender wage gap by utilizing #WomenEqualPay on social media platforms, events, and activities. Bring attention to the salary disparity and get the message out to as many individuals as possible.

  2. Be a supporter of equal pay

    Stand with women and people of color in the workplace and be an ally for them. Identify any challenges they are having at work and assist them in rallying for their rights and fair treatment.

  3. Make a case for fair compensation

    Support groups, make donations to fundraisers, sign petitions, and try to get your local politicians' attention by bringing this issue to their attention. Make a case for equal pay and a call to action.

5 Interesting Facts About The Pay Gap

  1. It gets worse

    Unfortunately, the pandemic halted progress in closing the gender wage gap, and cutbacks and a dearth of child care have pulled many women out of the job completely

  2. It's all around you

    Every country has some type of wage disparity in which males are paid more than women.

  3. It’s in every occupation

    In practically every occupation, women earn less than males.

  4. There are many Equal Pay Days

    For many women, the salary disparity is substantially bigger, and there have to be many equal paydays across the world.

  5. It does not provide a complete picture

    The gender wage disparity does not address discrimination, which is another source of worry.

Why AAPI Women's Equal Pay Day is Important

  1. Represents how long women must labor to earn what males earned

    The first step in taking any action is to become aware of the situation. The correct individuals and organizations will only be able to address this discrepancy once they are aware of the problem that native women confront, and this day is the ideal opportunity to do so.

  2. Equality is crucial

    There are several challenges that some segments of society experience that we are completely oblivious of. These days and efforts bring such challenges to light, allowing for action to be made to move ahead.

  3. It provides us with knowledge

    There are several challenges that some segments of society experience that we are completely oblivious of. These days and efforts bring such challenges to light, allowing for action to be made to move ahead.

AAPI Women's Equal Pay Day dates

YearDateDay
2023May 3Wednesday
2024May 3Friday
2025May 3Saturday
2026May 3Sunday
2027May 3Monday

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