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3 Reasons You Should Care About Black Women’s Equal Pay Day Even If You’re Not Black Or A Woman

Black Women's Pay Equity Day is meant to observe the pervasive racial-gender gap. But it's important to amplify intersectional awareness of the issue because it hits closer to home than you think.

Today (Sept. 21) is Black Women’s Equal Pay Day, which denotes how far into the year a Black woman has to work before they catch up with white men’s earnings.

In 2022, on average Black women make 58 cents for every dollar earned by white men according to Lean In. This is down from a few years ago, when 63 cents was earned by Black women for every dollar in 2020. This has dropped due to the devastating affects of COVID-19 to the female labor force.

“Caregiving duties are falling on women across the board, and Black women are more likely to be family breadwinners and also single mothers,” says Chandra Thomas Whitfield, journalist and podcast host of In The Gap in a 2020 interview with Forbes. “This year’s (2020) Black Women’s Equal Pay Day is especially unique, because we are either working from home or, if you’re an essential worker, trying to figure out childcare. At the same time, research shows that women and minorities tend to be the first fired and last rehired during an economic downturn, so it will be even harder for Black women to catch up.”

Two years later, not much has changed and it’s important to talk about it. Although this is a time to spotlight Black women’s specific challenges, other groups aren’t that far behind. Here’s a look at why intersectional awareness of Black Women’s Pay Inequity is crucial to everyone.