Louisiana ranks near the bottom for the gender pay gap

Thursday, April 11, 2013 - 9:15pm

It's been 50 years since President Kennedy signed the Equal Pay Act, and women are still making less than men for the same work.

A 2013 study published by the American Association of University Women (AAUW) shows that nationwide, women are earning about 77% of what men make. In Louisiana, women are only making 69 cents for every dollar that a man makes. This is in part to the type of jobs women often choose, but also because of social connotations and old fashioned mind sets.

While not at the bottom of the ranking, Louisiana is ranked 50 out of 51 of all the states and the District of Columbia for the gender wage gap.

Local lawmakers have been trying to change this, but have been unsuccessful in the past. This year, 3 bills have been introduced looking to help the state on this front. House Bill 453 by State Representative Barbara Norton, D-Shreveport and Senate Bills 68 and 152, from Senators Karen Carter Peterson and Edwin Murray, both New Orleans Democrats, would all make it illegal to lower a man's wage to equal woman's and also allow women to sue for gender discrimination without fear of repercussion.

While they think there is still a long way to go, the AAUW is looking at the gender pay gap as the glass half full, and are hopeful that both Federal and State proposals will pass, looking to narrow the gender pay gap.

The AAUW has a calculator on their website that shows both men and women's salaries for common jobs.

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