YWCA Cabaret Gala – What is the Gender Wage Gap?
It’s hump day! We’re half way through the week! That means it’s almost time for my honor from the YWCA of Boulder County. This week, I am using my platform to reflect on what it means to be a black woman striving to uphold the tenants of the YWCA of eliminating racism and empowering women. Today, I will answer a third question posed by the YWCA.
What challenges do you think the women, children, and families of Boulder face?
Before I answer this question, I have a question for you, dear reader. How much do working women in the U.S. make compared to men? You may think you know the answer, but you probably aren’t correct. Read to the end for the answer.
I think the biggest challenge that Boulder women and children face is making sure their voices are really heard. My entire career has been spent in advocacy, whether that’s for Fortune 500 companies or residents who care about an issue in their community. Whether the organization is big or small, they are effective if they have a seat and voice at the decision-making table. Organizations like the YWCA of Boulder give voice to women and children in these important policy-making decision.
Another challenge is communication. As a woman, I spend a lot time trying to get majority populations to understand my point of view as a woman. This point of view includes my fears, concerns and dreams as a woman. If people believed my perspective as a woman the first time I communicated to them, we can spend more time on making systems equitable. The recent #FreeKesha movement is heartbreaking. Although it was a female judge who made the ruling, it can sometimes be difficult for people who are not females to understand how soul crushing it is to work with a person who has abused you in the past. I can’t imagine the pain that Kesha is currently experiencing and I’m so glad to see so many powerful women rally to her side as she goes through this.
I will end my answer by addressing something I wish more people would elevate. In addition to making sure the voices of women are heard, I believe it is important that ALL of the voices of women are heard. So, let’s get back to the question I pose above. Did you say that a woman makes $0.78 for every dollar a man makes? This statistic does not include black and hispanic women. Black women make $0.64 for every dollar a man makes and our hispanic sisters make $0.56 for every dollar a man makes. So, I’ll ask the question again. How much does a woman make for every dollar a man makes? The answer is $0.56. Because when we leave out the most margenlized of our gender, we are doing our entire gender a disservice.
Thanks for sticking with me until the end and I’ll see you on Saturday at the YWCA!