Erie County observes Equal Pay Day

Posted at 7:04 AM, Apr 10, 2018
and last updated 2018-04-10 07:04:26-04

It's a day dedicated to shedding light on the pay gap between men and women in the United States. Tuesday, Equal Pay Day, takes place around the beginning of every April each year to symbolize how women in the U.S. must work, on average, 15 months in order to earn the same amount of money as men do per year in the same jobs.

Right now, the discussion about pay disparity between men and women is causing frustration to rise nationwide.

A new survey published by CareerBuilder shows that women are three times more likely to think there's a pay disparity and about one-third of women nationwide don't think they'll ever reach a salary of $50,000 per year. It also found about a quarter of women don't think they'll surpass an entry-level role in the workplace.

In an effort to close the gap, communities nationwide, including Erie County, are observing Equal Pay Day. Erie County Executive Mark Poloncarz, along with Deputy County Executive Maria Whyte, Executive Director of the Erie County Commission on the Status of Women Karen L. King PhD. and other county leaders will discuss what can be done here in Western New York to end the pay disparity. They're holding a press conference at 10:00 a.m. in the Old County Hall about the issue.

But it goes beyond county leaders.

Local businesses are also observing Equal Pay Day, and one Buffalo cafe can tout that it's one of just five in the country to represent the occasion. 

Sweet_ness 7 on Grant Street posted the following on its Facebook page:

The coffeehouse will have special coffee cup sleeves and napkins with pay gap statistics on them. And for Tuesday, women get specially-priced drinks.

Meantime, Governor Andrew Cuomo is proposing a ban on employers asking applicants about their prior salary history. It will expand last year's executive order to include the private sector as well. 

Right now, women in New York make 89 cents for every dollar men make in similar jobs. That's nine cents higher than the national average.