Latina Equal Pay Day is Latina Equal Pay day of action. It is a moving date. This is not really a day for celebration, it is a day of awareness and a day to take action.
The date changes annually because “it is determined by how much money a full-time Latina worker was paid, on average, in the prior calendar year. In other words, the day would be observed on the date a Latina catches up to the wages made by a white, non-Hispanic man the year before.”
Last year, in 2021, Latina Equal Pay Day was October 21. This year it is December 8th. That is a regression that means it took us, Latinas, longer to catch up to White Males and White Females a lot longer.
Latinas were paid 57 cents per dollar made by white non-Hispanic males. This year it went down to 47 cents per dollar for full-time workers. It went down 10 cents, which is 20% less. To add injury to insult, the cost of living went up by around 8% at the same time, and that is not Latina Equal Inflation only.
So, all in all, Latinas make less money while being a minority within a minority. Very often, they are the sole breadwinners and primary caregivers in their families. This is a discouraging situation that demands action. And TODAY is the day to take action.
First and foremost: Employers, please audit your employee female vs. male and minority vs. other segments compensation.
Next: Latinas, we can own how we play this game and the outcome of our own Latina Equal Pay. Let me explain what I mean in the way that I would want to have things explained to myself:
This is a game. This game has unspoken rules that better-represented groups know how to play well. Men, even Latino men, play this better than we do.
Most males will apply for a job and request an increase or a promotion as soon as the “rules of the game” say so, or even sooner. Women, and more so, Latinas, will aim to perform a great job and then wait for recognition to be volunteered. Requesting a raise is feared to be perceived as too forward. And maybe we feel that we should be thankful for what we currently have. When applying to a job, Latinas tend only to apply if they feel that they meet 100% or more of the job requirements listed. Many men, on the other hand, will apply even if they meet 80% or less.
We are playing the same game, but Latinas are not playing by the same rules.
So let me give you a simple task today: Latinas. If you have been at your job for 12 months or more and are accomplishing your goals, you MUST ask for an increase, even if this is out of your comfort zone.
Employers and HR professionals. You probably know all of this already, but as today is an ACTION day, please account for the above and audit and volunteer those adjustments, don’t wait for Latinas to get out of their comfort zone to request the pay of the job they are already doing.