From Paying For Groceries To Helping Save For Retirement, Pillich Points Out How Equal Pay Helps Ohioans
State Representative Connie Pillich held a news conference today to highlight the ways in which the pay gap hurts Ohio families. Standing alongside working families and next to a week’s worth of groceries, Pillich asked Ohio families what they would do with $10,805, the additional amount a family of four with two working parents would earn if women earned equal pay for equal work.
“Families across Ohio are shortchanged $10,805 dollars, every year,” said State Representative Pillich. “That’s $207 dollars every week. Take a moment and imagine what that could buy. A tank of gas for a four-door sedan costs about $51 dollars today. With an extra $207 per week, your family could fill the car up and have enough left over for groceries.
“Imagine how much further your paycheck would go if your groceries and gas were already covered. Imagine what you could save for if your utility bills wer already paid for. Maybe you would put money away for retirement. Or start saving for your kids’ education. Whatever it is, we should make this happen. Ohioans deserve equal pay for equal work.”
As part of an extended push to help erase the pay gap and make life easier for Ohio’s working families, Pillich introduced HB 456 in February. Her legislation—the Ohio Equal Pay Act—would bring Ohio in line with the federal Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, helping to protect Ohioans from paycheck discrimination. So far it has received one hearing.
She concluded her remarks by asking Ohio families directly, “What would your family do with an extra $10,805 per year?”
Ohio’s Pay Gap Shortchanges Women $10,805 Per Year. Data taken from the U.S. Census Bureau indicates that the median annual earnings for women in Ohio is $35,984, as compared with $46,789 for men—a difference of $10,805 per year. [American Association for University Women, 2013]
Ohio’s Pay Gap Hurts Working Women. According to data compiled by the National Partnership for Women and Families, Ohio’s pay gap costs the average woman 88 weeks of food for her family, nine additional months of mortgage and utilities payment, and 3,007 additional gallons of gas. The study estimates that “Ohio women who are employed full time lose a combined total of approximately $16,891,175,570.” [National Partnership for Women and Families, 04/2014]
More And More Families Depend On Women Breadwinners To Make Ends Meet. According to a Pew Research Center analysis of US Census data, “A record 40% of all households with children under the age of 18 include mothers who are either the sole or primary source of income for the family.” In 1960, only 10% of mothers were the primary or sole breadwinners. [Pew Research Center, 05/29/2013]
Women Earning Equal Pay For Equal Work Boosts Our Economy. As the Institute for Women’s Policy Research study notes, “in 2012, the U.S. economy would have produced additional income of $447.6 billion (equal to 2.9 percent of 2012 GDP).” Additionally, the poverty rate for all working women would be cut in half. [Institute for Women’s Policy, 01/29/2014]
State Representative Connie Pillich Introduces HB 456. The so-called Ohio Equal Pay Act “would codify into Ohio law the federal Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act of 2009.” [Columbus Dispatch, 3/20/2014] The legislation helps Ohio families protect themselves from paycheck discrimination, allowing them to maximize their income potential.