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NYS Department of Labor recognizes Equal Pay Day, affirms commitment to closing gender wage gap


Tue, Mar 12th 2024 05:05 pm

Submitted by the New York State Department of Labor

Today, on Equal Pay Day, the New York State Department of Labor recognizes the persistent struggle against the gender wage gap, and reiterates its commitment to achieving pay equity in New York state.

Equal Pay Day symbolizes how far into the year women must work to earn what men earned in the previous year, highlighting the ongoing issue of pay disparity.

NYSDOL's latest study on the issue reveals that, while New York's gender wage gap is narrower than the national average – with women earning 88.2 cents for every dollar earned by men in 2021 – significant disparities persist, especially for women of color. Black or African American women and Hispanic and Latina women face even more considerable challenges, earning 67.8 cents and 62.9 cents on the dollar, respectively, when compared to non-Hispanic white men.

NYSDOL Commissioner Roberta Reardon said, "As we observe Equal Pay Day, we are reminded of the challenges that persist in achieving true pay equity. While we celebrate the progress made, we recognize that there is still much work to be done. We remain steadfast in our commitment to close the gender wage gap and to ensure that all New Yorkers, regardless of gender, have equal opportunities to thrive in the workplace."

In response to the findings in the gender wage gap report, NYSDOL has actively implemented measures aimed at fostering a more equitable labor market. Among these initiatives is the pay transparency requirement, effective as of September 2023, mandating New York state businesses disclose compensation ranges for job postings. This measure is designed to enhance transparency, and empower employees to make informed decisions about their careers.

Further supporting New York workers and their families, Gov. Kathy Hochul's administration extended 12 weeks of fully paid parental leave benefits to over 80% of the state workforce, marking a historic advancement in family support policies. Hochul also secured an historic agreement to increase New York’s minimum wage through 2026 and index it to inflation beginning in 2027, ensuring that wages keep pace with the cost of living and supporting the economic stability of all New Yorkers.

Additionally, laws ensuring break time and private space for nursing mothers at work underscore New York's dedication to creating a supportive and inclusive work environment.

NYSDOL's efforts also extend to empowering women through its career centers, offering counseling, skills development, and direct referrals to high-earning jobs. These initiatives have contributed to an increase in the labor force participation rate among women, and a decrease in the state’s share of unemployed women, indicating progress toward gender equality in the workforce.

NYSDOL continues to monitor and update its study on the state's gender wage gap, employing data-driven strategies to address inequities and support a labor market that values and compensates all workers fairly.

For more information about the NYSDOL’s initiatives to combat the gender wage gap and to support workforce equality, visit the gender wage gap hub.

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