Today is Latina Equal Pay Day – We Still Fight For It
It’s Latina Equal Pay Day and just like Cardi B all we want to see is the Money!
It has been 55 years since the passing of the Equal Pay Act and shockingly Latinas are still fighting for equal pay. Yup that’s right! Latinas happen to be amongst the most impacted by the gender gap. They are paid 53 cents for every dollar earned by their non-Hispanic, white male counter parts.
It’s safe to say that when it comes to the pay gap, race and gender continue to play a significant role. Latinas wanting to earn more than their white male counterparts face difficulty in doing so. Many would need to have earned a bachelor’s degree or higher in order to earn more than a white man who has some to no college education. Making white men with little college education and no degree earn $9,700 more than Latinas who have earned an associate’s degree.
It’s also important to point out that the wage gap affects Latinas in different ways and can be even worse for undocumented Latinas. Which was just the case for Samantha Ramirez-Herrera who plays Elena on Pinkslipped and is the proud CEO and founder of Offtharecord. Herrera who is currently a DACA recipient has had to face being underpaid for being undocumented and for being Latina throughout her life. Her experiences with unequal pay have shaped the way she goes about approaching new projects and how she goes about running her business.
“My experience has molded my approach to how I pay the people that I employ. I know first-hand how it feels to be under paid and under-appreciated,” said Herrera.
Herrera like many other Latinas took matters into her own hands and aside from other projects is an entrepreneur with a company that employs US citizens.
Other Latinas are following Herrera’s footsteps and are taking action by building their own businesses. Forming part in leveling the “financial” playing field by using technology to expand their brands and grow their income.
In fact, Latinas form part of the growing Latino-owned businesses in the U.S. that has grown at a rate that has outpaced other ethnic groups, found in a study from the Stanford Latino Entrepreneurship Initiative.
Founder and host of the podcast Latina Money Janet Cruz Bisonó has the same mind set and believes technology is away in which Latinas can fight back. Bisonó touches on such topics in her podcast which she created as a space in which she is able to educate Latinas on money. She talks to other Latinas on being smart about their money and talks about the importance of technology.
“Learning to create your own opportunities through the use of technology is a skill that will set any woman up to change the money game,” said Bisonó.
And although Latinas and women in general have a long way to go to achieve equal pay, utilizing technology to create those new opportunities is one way to start. Don’t forget that demanding equal pay at a new job is a good way to start as well and most importantly exercise your right to vote.
“This is not the time to play small. Know your worth, own your worth. Don’t settle and get yo money honey!” said Herrera.
Learning to ‘negotiate pay’ is a skill not many Latinas are taught to do so by default accepting the first offer happens, understanding your state’s ‘Pay Disclosure Laws’ on disclosing previous salaries must also be understood before stepping into an interview and if you are entering the workforce, a first job – know the state minimum wage and overtime policies. ‘Cuz working for free? None of that!