ATLANTA, GA – The Labor Council for Latin American Advancement (LCLAA), Equal Pay Today!, IUPAT District Council 77, 9 to 5, Georgia Latino Alliance for Human Rights, Justice for Migrant Women and other allies kick off a national day of action for Latina equal pay today, Thursday November 1, 2018 with the 3rd Annual Latina Equal Pay Day Summit. Latina Equal Pay Day represents the day that Latina workers finally “catch up” to the average earnings paid to a white, non-Hispanic male worker in the prior calendar year. The most recent data reflects that Latinas are paid 53 cents to the dollar paid to white, non-Hispanic male workers.
“Latinas are losing ground when it comes to closing the pay gap given that data reveals that the average Latina was denied an additional one cent per dollar paid to white men, dropping from 54 cents to 53 cents in 2017,” – states Mónica Ramírez, senior advisor to LCLAA, founder of Justice for Migrant Women and coordinator on the national Latina Equal Pay campaign. “This should be extremely concerning. This adds up to short and long-term consequences for Latinas and their families.”
The data reflects that Latinas will be denied over a million dollars in earnings because of this pay gap over the course of their careers. Latina workers in certain states, including Georgia, fare even worse.
“Latinas in the state of Georgia are being paid just 48 cents to the dollar paid to white men, which is even less than the national average. This is outrageous! As bad as this situation is, we cannot forget about the Latina workers who are being left out, like undocumented and trans women.” – said Adelina Nicholls, Executive Director of Georgia Latino Alliance for Human Rights (GLAHR). “We must continue to shine a light on this reality. Days like today are important because they remind us that even though we have made so much progress in the fight for human rights and workers’ rights in this state and across the country, we must continue fighting until all of us are treated equally.”
Advocates contend that these lost earnings have detrimental consequences for Latinas, from the inability to meet basic needs during prime working years to the inability to save for the future and retirement.
“Latinas are the backbone of our homes, of our families, of our communities. We are one of the fastest growing groups in the country, yet our efforts, and our work is poorly and unfairly compensated,” – said Yanira Merino, LCLAA National President. “We need to learn about our rights in the workplace, and we need to pass on that knowledge to younger Latinas, to the generation that comes behind us so that we can make sure that Latinas of all ages across our nation are being fairly compensated for their work. That is how we start to build change.”
The summit is part of the overall national campaign, which also includes a coordinated social media storm, which will take place at 2pm EST/11am PST. This year’s campaign also included a partnership with the Phenomenal Women Action Campaign to launch a Phenomenally Latina t-shirt to amplify this issue. Through these efforts, partners across the United States will raise awareness about the pay gap and its negative impact on Latinas, their families and the overall economy. The campaign aims to draw attention to the disparate impact of this wage gap on Latinas, including the fact that some Latina workers, such as mothers and immigrant women workers, experience an even wider pay gap.
“Latina Equal Pay Day is more than just the approximate day Latina pay reaches that of White non-Hispanic men from the previous year, it’s the day we highlight the gap between America’s promise and its reality,” shares Joi Chaney, Director of Equal Pay Today and Senior Policy Counsel at Equal Rights Advocates. “No one is seeking unfair advantage or for employers or even the government to solve for the worlds inequity, but we are seeking lowered barriers to opportunity for all women, beginning with women of color who face a wider wage gap.”
Both the Summit and the overall campaign will also be heavily focused on discussing solutions to this problem. In the lead up to the midterm elections, a key topic for discussion is the role of civic engagement and political leadership to address this problem. To date, while some states have enacted legislation to address this issue, advocates believe that there is more work that must be done by Congressional leaders to close this pay gap.
“Earning less money for performing the same job is a discriminatory practice that needs to end now! These practices are biased and lead to a systematic barrier for the economic sustainability of entire Latino households,” comments Neidi Dominguez, National Strategic Campaign Coordinator and Assistant to the General President IUPAT. “We need to elect leaders who care about this, we need to be active in spreading the word about this unfair wage gap!”
In addition to Ramírez, Merino, Chaney, and Dominguez, other influential individuals participating in this year’s campaign include, legendary civil rights and labor leader Dolores Huerta; labor leaders Esther Lopez and LCLAA’s Executive Director Hector Sanchez; political leaders such as Senator Catherine Cortes Masto, Congresswoman Nanette Baragan, and Georgia State Representative Brenda Lopez; leaders in the entertainment industry, such as Cristela Alonso, Vannessa Vasquez, Diane Guerrero, Karla Souza, Eva Longoria, Kate del Castillo, Olga Segura, Adriana Barraza, Patricia Riggen, Ivana de Maria, Patricia Maya and Christy Haubegger; Latina business women including Nelly Galan, Nathalie Molina Nino, Ingrid Duran and Catherine Pino, among many other Latina influencers in entertainment, politics, business and civil society.
“Latina women are paid 47% less than white men, Today Nov. 1st marks that day when Latina women have caught up to what white men have made in 2017. 11 months! , that is ridiculous. As I think about today, and the movement for equal pay equal rights, I think about a quote from Dolores Huerta….’Every moment is an organizing opportunity, every person a potential activist, every minute a chance to change the world.’ What this means to me is we must come together, all women and continue to fight for our sisters, continue to organize labor unions in the workplace, continue to fight!” – states Erica Clemmons Dean, Georgia State Director for 9 to 5
The summit is taking place at the IUPAT DC 77 Training Center in Decatur, Georgia on 11/1 from 11am to 4pm EST. More information about the campaign is available at www.latinaequalpay.org
The Labor Council for Latin American Advancement (LCLAA) is the leading national organization for Latino(a) workers and their families. LCLAA was born in 1972 out of the need to educate, organize and mobilize Latinos in the labor movement and has expanded its influence to organize Latinos in an effort to impact workers’ rights and their influence in the political process. LCLAA represents the interest of more than 2 million Latino workers in the American Federation of Labor-Congress of Industrial Organizations (AFL-CIO), The Change to Win Federation, Independent Unions and all its membership. Visit LCLAA on the web at www.lclaa.org, on Facebook and Twitter.
About Equal Pay Today!
Equal Pay Today, now a project of Equal Rights Advocates, is a collaboration of women’s and workers legal rights advocates working at the local, state and federal level to close the gender wage gap and engage diverse constituencies in the fight for equal pay.
The International Union of Painters and Allied Trades represents a growing force of men and women in the United States and Canada who work in the Finishing Trades – Industrial & Commercial Painting, Drywall Finishing, Glazing & Glass Work, Sign & Display and Floor Covering Installation, and many more successful careers in the construction industry and public sector.
The Georgia Latino Alliance for Human Rights educates, organizes, and empowers Latinos in Georgia to defend and advance their civil and human rights. Established in 2001, GLAHR is a community-based organization that develops statewide grassroots leadership in Latino immigrant communities.
About 9 to 5
Today 9 to 5 is one of the largest, most respected national membership organizations of working women in the U.S., dedicated to putting working women’s issues on the public agenda. We’ve grown from our Boston roots into a national organization with members all over the country. We’re mostly women, many of us working two jobs or more to make ends meet for our families.
About Justice for Migrant Women:
Justice for Migrant Women aims to ensure that all migrant women, whether migrating across borders, around regions or within states, are guaranteed human and civil rights, including the freedom of mobility, the ability to live and work with dignity and to be free of threats of violence against them and their families. It was founded in 2014 to conduct outreach and education to migrant women about their rights, conduct policy advocacy and to engage in cross sector, cross movement community building. Additional information about Justice for Migrant Women is available www.justice4women.org
To find more information about the Latina Equal Pay Day campaign, go to www.latinaequalpay.org