The gender pay gap has improved for workers 25 to 34 years old but in general the gender pay gap has remained relatively stable in the US over the past 15 years. In 2020, women earned 84% of what men earned which means that women would have to work an extra 42 days to reach what men are paid.
A Pew research study shows that as has been the case in recent decades, the 2020 wage gap was smaller for workers ages 25 to 34 than for all workers 16 and older. Women ages 25 to 34 earned 93 cents for every dollar a man in the same age group earned on average. In 1980, women ages 25 to 34 earned 33 cents less than their male counterparts, compared with 7 cents in 2020.
The estimated 16-cent gender pay gap among all workers in 2020 was down from 36 cents in 1980.
Much of this gap has been explained by measurable factors such as educational attainment, occupational segregation and work experience. The narrowing of the gap is attributable in large part to gains women have made in each of these dimensions, the Pew said.
“Even though women have increased their presence in higher-paying jobs traditionally dominated by men, such as professional and managerial positions, women as a whole continue to be overrepresented in lower-paying occupations relative to their share of the workforce. This may contribute to gender differences in pay.”
“Other factors that are difficult to measure, including gender discrimination, may also contribute to the ongoing wage discrepancy.”
A Pew survey 2017 showed 42% working women said they had experienced gender discrimination at work, compared with 22% for men.
“One of the most commonly reported forms of discrimination focused on earnings inequality. One-in-four employed women said they had earned less than a man who was doing the same job; just 5% of men said they had earned less than a woman doing the same job.”
A study 2016 of workers who had taken parental, family or medical leave in the two years prior to the survey found that mothers typically take more time off than fathers after birth or adoption. The median length of leave among mothers after the birth or adoption of their child was 11 weeks, compared with one week for fathers. About half (47%) of mothers who took time off from work in the two years after birth or adoption took off 12 weeks or more.
“Mothers were also nearly twice as likely as fathers to say taking time off had a negative impact on their job or career. Among those who took leave from work in the two years following the birth or adoption of their child, 25% of women said this had a negative impact at work, compared with 13% of men.”
In a 2019 survey, mothers with children younger than 18 were more likely than fathers to say they needed to reduce their work hours, felt like they couldn’t give full effort at work and turned down a promotion because they were balancing work and parenting responsibilities. Roughly one-in-five mothers said they had been passed over for an important assignment or a promotion at work, while 27% said they had been treated as if they weren’t committed to their work.”