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Let’s Talk About Equal Pay Day: Why It Matters

When it comes to workplace fairness, Equal Pay Day stands as a stark reminder of the persistent gender pay gap that continues.

Observed annually, this day symbolizes the extra months and days into the next year that women must work to earn what men earned in the previous year. Beyond mere statistics, Equal Pay Day is a glaring reminder that we’ve got work to do in leveling the playing field.

At its core, Equal Pay Day serves as a call to action, urging us to address the inequality of the wage gap. Despite significant strides towards gender equality in recent decades, women continue to make $0.83 for every dollar for men on average. This gap is even wider for women of color and those belonging to marginalized communities, highlighting intersecting factors of discrimination and inequality. So, why does this matter? The ramifications of the gender pay gap extend far beyond individuals. When women are undervalued and underpaid, the economy as a whole suffers. We’re missing out on all the amazing contributions women could make if given the chance.

But here’s the thing: closing the gender pay gap isn’t just a one-person job. It’s going to take all of us — employers, policymakers and everyday people — to make it happen. That means pushing for fairer policies, calling out discrimination when we see it, and supporting initiatives that promote equity in the workplace.

So, as we mark Equal Pay Day each year, let’s use it as a springboard for change. Let’s have those tough conversations, advocate for better policies, and celebrate the achievements of women everywhere. Because together, we can create a future where everyone — regardless of gender — gets the recognition and paycheck they deserve.


Julie Keller, Women’s Fund for the Fox Valley Region

The Women’s Fund for the Fox Valley Region is a supporting organization of the Community Foundation and a separate 501 (c)(3) nonprofit organization. The Women’s Fund invests in the needs of women and girls through grants, advocacy and education. Since 1994, the Women’s Fund has awarded more than $1.8 million in grants to innovative programs that improve women’s and girls’ physical and mental health, ensure their economic security, promote their safety and enhance their lives.  

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