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Myths and Facts About the Gender Pay Gap

In the era of “TimesUp” and “MeToo,” discrimination in the workforce is a hot topic. And it should be. The reality is, the gender pay gap and discrimination is unfortunately still a real issue today. In the 1960’s, it became illegal to discriminate on the basis of sex, but that doesn’t mean it still doesn’t happen behind closed doors, or without companies not even realizing they’re doing it. So here are some facts and myths about the gender pay gap:

Women have children and need to take care of their families: 

Many people in the workplace discriminate against paying women equally because women are generally regarded as being the main caretakers of families and need to take time off when they have children. Men are seen to be “more dedicated” to their jobs. This is an issue that we as a society have constructed over time and is part of the glass ceiling. Yes, women have kids, but that doesn’t mean they don’t work as hard as men and aren’t as dedicated to their jobs. In fact, there is no evidence of decreased productivity for women with children as opposed to men. In fact, many women do both, and it’s really HARD. Do you know how physically and emotionally difficult it is on the body and mind to have kids? Women are superstars for multi-tasking like this, and deserve far more credit for something that men realistically don’t do. But women are the ones who get punished for this, by not getting pay raises and not getting promoted. 

Women take lower-paying jobs: 

Some of the “lower-paying fields” are heavily dominated by women, such as education, psychology and human resources. People argue that women want to work these lower paying jobs. But these jobs are extremely important and should be paid higher and equally because they’re essential.

Women don’t ask for more money: 

Again, a big glass ceiling problem. This may be true, but this is because women are often highly discouraged from asking for pay raises, and are afraid to speak up. Research shows that women are more likely to be turned down when asking for pay raises. Men asking for a raise would be considered ambitious, but women are far more likely to be considered pushy and annoying. 

Women of color are more likely to be paid less and discriminate against: 

Statistics show that this is absolutely true. They earn 69 cents for a man’s dollar. This is another huge issue of diversity and why we need to move forward more with Black Lives Matter.

I hope this list helped you learn more about the myths and facts of the gender pay gap!


Molly Prior

Manhattan '21

Molly Prior is a senior at Manhattan College studying communications and journalism. With a passion for women's empowerment and lifestyle, she hopes to write for a magazine such as Cosmopolitan or Women's Health.
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