According to U.S. Census data, there still exists in the United States a gender wage gap, with career-long disadvantages for women.
In preparation for Congress' vote Tuesday on the Paycheck Fairness Act, The White House has released a series of ecards to promote passage of the bill.
The Paycheck Fairness Act builds on the 1963 Equal Pay Act and the 1938 Fair Labor Standards Act, putting in place stricter rules for employers regarding employee wages. (You can read the text of the Paycheck Fairness Act here.)
- On average, full-time working women in 2008 earned just 77 cents for every dollar a man earns. (In 1963 it was 59 cents for every dollar.)
- in 2011, a typical 25-year-old woman working full time earned $5,000 less than a 25-year-old man.
- By age 65, the average woman will have lost $431,000 over her working lifetime as a result of the earnings gap.
"The Paycheck Fairness Act addresses the issue of when women and men are paid differently for doing the exact SAME job," wrote Sarah Damaske in a Huffington Post Business blog.
More than 50 percent of households today have women breadwinners, with 49 million children dependent on women's salaries.
"This substantial gap is more than a statistic — it has real life consequences," according to The White House. "When women, who make up nearly half the workforce, bring home less money each day, it means they have less for the everyday needs of their families, and over a lifetime of work, far less savings for retirement."