Press Release
Women of Color Lose Billions Each Year Due to White Supremacy and Sexism in the Workplace

New report from the National Partnership for Women & Families calls for better wages and more opportunity for women this Equal Pay Day

WASHINGTON, D.C. – March 13, 2023 – The National Partnership for Women & Families is releasing a new report, “Women’s Work Is Undervalued, and It’s Costing Us Billions,” which details the negative effects of job segregation on women in the workforce, and its particular impacts on women of color and women with disabilities. The report comes in advance of Equal Pay Day – the day into the new year when women’s pay finally catches up to men’s.

The analysis finds that if the top 10 most common jobs for women working full time, year round paid the same as the top 10 jobs for men, those women would take home an additional $96 billion in pay in one year. Men’s and women’s overrepresentation in different jobs – what researchers call “occupational segregation” – is the primary driver of the gender wage gap.

High costs of occupational segregation for women and their families include:

  • Women make up just 30 percent of the top 20 occupations with the highest pay, and those jobs exist largely in science, technology, engineering and math – or STEM – fields.The average annual pay for those jobs is $137,000.
  • Women make up two-thirds of the 20 lowest-paying occupations, at 63.6 percent of workers in those occupations. In those jobs, average wages for women working full time, year round are just $22,500 per year, or only $11 per hour.

“Women’s work has been undervalued for generations solely based on the fact that they are primary caregivers in many families, and these new findings make it clear where the divisions lie in terms of pay and opportunity,” said Jocelyn Frye, president of the National Partnership for Women & Families. “The infrastructure investments made by the Biden administration have created a once-in-a-generation opportunity to increase women’s share of higher paying construction and manufacturing jobs which will not only support our economy but also help close the wage gap.”

The report’s recommendations include centering gender and racial equity, and including all women in high-paying jobs, along with raising wages in those jobs where women of color are overrepresented.

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About the National Partnership for Women & Families

The National Partnership for Women & Families is a nonprofit, nonpartisan advocacy group dedicated to promoting fairness in the workplace, reproductive health and rights, access to quality, affordable health care and policies that help all people meet the dual demands of work and family.

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