Native Women Work 22 Months to Earn What a White Male Earns in 1 Year

Native Women Lead is co-hosting workshops on Native Women’s Equal Pay Day, observed this year on October 1st. Pivotal topics include demystifying compensation packages; understanding salary, equity & benefits; and mentorship & building your advocacy network. (Graphics Courtesy Native Women Lead)

It takes Native women 10 months longer to make what the average White, non-Hispanic male makes in a year. As Congresswomen Deb Haaland, D-New Mexico, a member of the Pueblo of Laguna, wrote in an op-ed published by CNBC last year: “If I told you that Native women have to work 22 months to make what their white male counterparts make in 12 months, would you be surprised?” 

October 1, 2020 is Native Women’s Equal Pay Day — the day Native women must work into the new year to make what White men made at the end of last year. 

Native women earn approximately $0.57 cents on the dollar of White, non-Hispanic men, according to 2019 data. It’s a backslide from Native Women’s Equal Pay Day last year, observed on September 23, 2019, when Native women made approximately $0.58 cents on the dollar of White, non-Hispanic men, based on 2018 data. 

This pay gap doesn’t just impact Native American women — it also hurts their families. A recent poll by NPR also indicates that Black, Latino and Native American households are hardest hit by the financial impact of the pandemic, so hopefully the 2021 observation of Native Women’s Equal Pay Day isn’t pushed back even further. 

Two-thirds of Native American mothers are the main breadwinners for their households. If paid fairly, a Native American woman would earn almost $1 million more over the course of her career, according to LeanIn.org.

Native Women Lead is teaming up with Equal Rights Advocates, Closing the Women’s Wealth Gap Initiative, and Nadia De Ala to raise awareness, advocate, and expand Native women’s earning potential on Native Women’s Equal Pay Day. 

Registration is required to attend most of these virtual events that amplify the need for equity in pay for Native women. 

  • Native Women’s Equal Pay Day Fireside Chat: Equal Rights Panel discussion with Native Women Lead, IllumiNative, Hope Nation LLC, and Senator Red Dawn Foster, 11-11:30 am MST
  • Native Women Lead & Nadia De Ala Negotiation Workshop, entitled “Womxn of Color Unapologetically Negotiate,” 12-1:00 pm MST
  • Native Women In Tech, 2-3:30 pm MST
  • California/Talking Circle featuring Deb Haaland, 4-5:00 pm MST, tune in to watch on Facebook live. Set a reminder here

Pivotal topics include demystifying compensation packages; understanding salary, equity & benefits; and mentorship & building your advocacy network. For more information, visit https://www.nativewomenlead.org/equalpay

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