Samara Sheff
(202) 225-4572

Today marks Black Women’s Equal Pay Day. August 22nd marks how far Black women will have to work into the next year to earn what white men earned in the previous year, translating to 142 days.Rep. Gwen Moore released the following statement:

“I am proud to join the Congressional Black Caucus in their continued fight for equal pay for every Black woman. By federal law, pay discrimination is illegal. Unfortunately, the gender pay gap continues to exist, harming Black women, who only earn 61 cents for every dollar that a white man earns. With 84% of Black women being breadwinners for their families, Black women’s equal pay is essential to Black families economic stability. I was the primary breadwinner for my children and I understand why we must urgently address this economic injustice.

In March, I was proud to vote in support of the House’s passage of the Paycheck Fairness Act (H.R. 7), which will help address the gender pay gap. The Senate has no clear plans to pass or even act on this legislation. Black women should not have to wait as they lose earnings. That’s why we must work collectively to ensure that more women do not fall behind.”


In 2017, Black women working full-time, year-round earned only 61 cents for every dollar earned by white, non-Hispanic male workers.

  • This is versus 77 cents for white women, 85 cents for Asian American women, and 53 cents for Latinas.
  • This disparity can have lifetime effects — black women stand to lose an estimated $946,120 over a 40-year career due to the wage gap. Black women’s career losses based on today’s wage gap would amount to more than $1 million in nine states.

Based on 2016 data, Black mothers working full-time, year-round were paid 54 cents for every dollar paid to white, non-Hispanic fathers working full-time, year-round.

In 2017, black women’s labor force participation rate was 60.3 percent.

  • This is compared to a little over 56 percent each for white women, Asian American women, and Latinas.

Nearly 15 million family households in the United States are headed by women. About 26 percent of those families, or 3.9 million family households, have incomes that fall below the poverty level.


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