MADISON, Wis.— Opportunity Wisconsin released the following statement on Equal Pay Day today, which marks the day when women will have earned the same amount that white men earned at the end of 2020. Wisconsin women are, on average, paid 81 cents to every dollar their white male counterparts make. What’s more, the pandemic has disproportionately impacted women, dealing a double blow to working women across Wisconsin.

Meghan Roh, Opportunity Wisconsin Program Director
“The women of Wisconsin have not escaped the harsh realities of the pandemic. Whether it’s serving on the frontlines in an essential job or lack of access to quality childcare, COVID-19 has disproportionately impacted women across the Badger State. To make matters worse, the gender wage gap remains a stubborn barrier for too many.  And while the wage gap impacts all women, it’s felt most acutely for women of color. We’re calling on Congress to prioritize policies that combat unfair pay practices and disparities in order to help Wisconsin women receive the pay they deserve.”   

Wisconsin Gender Pay Gap by Congressional District

District Men (2019) Women (2019) Earnings Ratio (2019)
WI-01 (Steil) $57,367 $46,520 81.1%
WI-02 (Pocan) $56,273 $48,872  86.8%
WI-03 (Kind) $50,621 $38,420  75.9%
WI-04 (Moore) $45,512  $41,002 90.1% 
WI-05 (Fitzgerald) $61,273  $48,776 79.6% 
WI-06 (Grothman) $52,749 $41,627 78.9%
WI-07 (Tiffany) $50,588 $38,858  76.8%
WI-08 (Gallagher) $51,660 $41,357 80.1% 

Source: AAUW, U.S. Census Bureau, American Community Survey, 2019. 

COVID-19’s Impact on Working Wisconsin Women

  • At the beginning of April 2020, the unemployment rate for women in Wisconsin skyrocketed from 2.6 percent to 18.2 percent, while men only saw an increase to 9.0 percent.
  • Now, approximately 50 percent of the unemployed workers in Wisconsin are women.
  • According to a Census survey, nearly 40 percent of Wisconsin women have experienced a loss of employment income since last March.
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