The difference between men’s and women’s median earnings is known as the gender pay gap. The pay disparity between traditionally male and female professions and the level of education and positions held all contribute to this gap. Since generalizations based on averages are unreliable, it is crucial to consider a wide range of variables when studying the wage gap, including historical characteristics, cultural aspects of a particular society, and specific examples of occupations. Historically, women have fewer rights, which has impacted the culture of modern society since prejudices cause employers to pay differently, so women’s fight for equality is ongoing, and the government should work on a solution.
Systemic injustices are the primary cause of the gender pay gap. Women are overwhelmingly employed in the informal sector worldwide, mainly migrant women. There is a 16% gender pay gap worldwide, meaning that working women typically make up 84% of what men do (Gupta et al., 2018). The difference is even more significant for working mothers, immigrant women, and women of color. These pay gaps have real, daily adverse effects on women and their families, which are then made worse by crises. Working mothers generally make less money than women without children, and the gap widens as a woman has more kids (Sterling et al., 2020). The gender pay gap may be caused by various factors, including shorter work hours, lower-paying jobs that allow for work-life balance, and a lack of support for women on maternity leave.
Impact on Life and Experience
Millions of women and their families are forced to live in entrenched poverty due to the glaring injustice of the gender pay gap. Gender stereotypes force women to seek employment in the care sector, frequently viewed as unskilled or semi-skilled and therefore low paying because they prevent them from finding fulfillment in traditionally male-dominated professions (Lee & Kray, 2021). The gender pay gap continues due to discriminatory hiring procedures and promotion decisions that keep women out of leadership and well-paying positions. For every dollar white men make in the United States, black women earn just 62 cents, Native American women 57 cents, and Hispanic women 54 cents (Bennedsen et al., 2022). Wage reductions can restrict women’s and their family’s access to education, health care, and other necessities, leading to poverty.
It is only possible to consider the issue of the wage gap between men and women with an understanding of the historical context. It was easy to decide to focus on history since all societies currently experience social inequality due to patriarchy’s historical dominance. There are numerous recorded instances where women organized protests and used other tactics to fight for equal pay. In 1857, workers from clothing and shoe factories gathered in New York to call for a 10-hour workday and equal pay for men and women (Brynin, 2017). The man could work a 10-hour day at a time when women worked 16 hours per day. The government must act to reverse this trend toward inequality because it has persisted to this day.
In conclusion, even though humanity is making significant progress toward achieving equality for all, injustice still exists in many industries. The wage gap is one strong example, where women earn significantly less even though they work the same hours or put in a lot of household work. The gender pay gap has numerous root causes, so closing it calls for comprehensive action. Legislation should guarantee the right to equal pay for equally valuable work as well as adequate access to the legal defense of this right. For employers to provide equal opportunities for everyone, it is critical to alter public perceptions about women’s work capacity.
Bennedsen, M., Simintzi, E., Tsoutsoura, M., & Wolfenzon, D. (2022). Do firms respond to gender pay gap transparency? The Journal of Finance, 77(4), 2051-2091. Web.
Brynin, M. (2017). The gender pay gap. Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC).
Gupta, V. K., Mortal, S. C., & Guo, X. (2018). Revisiting the gender gap in CEO compensation: Replication and extension of Hill, Upadhyay, and Beekun’s (2015) work on CEO gender pay gap. Strategic Management Journal, 39(7), 2036–2050. Web.
Lee, M., & Kray, L. J. (2021). A gender gap in managerial span of control: implications for the gender pay gap. Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, 167, 1–17. Web.
Sterling, A. D., Thompson, M. E., Wang, S., Kusimo, A., Gilmartin, S., & Sheppard, S. (2020). The confidence gap predicts the gender pay gap among STEM graduates. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 117(48), 30303–30308. Web.