LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Women's pay gap is an important issue for families

Friday, April 12, 2013 | 6:00 a.m. CDT

On April 17, the League of Women Voters, the American Association of University Women, the National Organization of Women and other committed advocates from across the state will participate in an Equal Pay Rally for women at the Missouri State Capitol Rotunda at 11:30 a.m.

April is symbolic of the point into the new year that a woman must work in order to earn the wages paid to a man in the previous year. In Missouri, women are paid only 78 cents for every dollar a man is paid. This wage gap costs the average American full-time woman worker between $700,000 and $2 million over the course of her career. The gap is compounded when pay increases are based on percentages of wages.

AAUW’s publication, Graduating to a Pay Gap, found that one year out of college women are paid, on average, of 82 cents for every dollar paid to their male peers. The report further shows that women are paid 7 percent less than men even when they work in the same job, major in the same field and work the same number of hours per week. A study by the American Medical Association reports the annual salary of male doctors exceed that of female doctors by $12,000.

The women’s pay gap is a critical economic issue for many families who rely on wives' and mothers' incomes, especially in single-parent families. For all the mothers, sisters, wives and daughters, we hope you will join us in bringing attention to this economic injustice on April 17. We will be wearing white to celebrate working women.

Holly Burgess is president of the American Association of University Women Columbia Branch. Carol Schreiber and Marilyn McLeod are co-presidents for the League of Women Voters of Columbia-Boone County.

Like what you see here? Become a member.

Show Me the Errors (What's this?)

Report corrections or additions here. Leave comments below here.

You must be logged in to participate in the Show Me the Errors contest.


John Schultz April 12, 2013 | 8:39 a.m.

Too bad there's not a link to the survey (I'm a bit too busy to track it down today), as I would like to see some of the methodology employed. The numbers mentioned in the letter make no sense. If correct, the average female college graduate working from age 22 to 65 "loses" between $16,000 to $46,000 per year, yet the gap for freaking doctors is only $12,000? Something's not adding up with the figures provided.

(Report Comment)
Shaina Cavazos April 12, 2013 | 2:47 p.m.

Mr. Schultz,

I went ahead and found those links for you.

This one is to the AAUW's website, which has many links to more details about the report in question, including its methodology.

This one is for the AMA study. The figure in question was quoted in the excerpt below on page 5 of the PDF (which is what the link brings you to):

"After adjusting for faculty characteristics including specialty, seniority, hours worked and number of peer reviewed publications, female physicians earned nearly $12,000 less than male physicians. "

Happy researching!

Shaina Cavazos
Assistant News Editor
Columbia Missourian

(Report Comment)

Leave a comment

Speak up and join the conversation! Make sure to follow the guidelines outlined below and register with our site. You must be logged in to comment. (Our full comment policy is here.)

  • Don't use obscene, profane or vulgar language.
  • Don't use language that makes personal attacks on fellow commenters or discriminates based on race, religion, gender or ethnicity.
  • Use your real first and last name when registering on the website. It will be published with every comment. (Read why we ask for that here.)
  • Don’t solicit or promote businesses.

We are not able to monitor every comment that comes through. If you see something objectionable, please click the "Report comment" link.

You must be logged in to comment.

Forget your password?

Don't have an account? Register here.