In 13 U.S. States, a Woman Born Today Will Not See Equal Pay During Her Working Life

Press Release

If current trends continue, women living in North Dakota, Utah, Louisiana, and Wyoming will not see equal pay until the next century

Washington, DC—According to a new state analysis released today by the Institute for Women’s Policy Research (IWPR), there are 13 states where progress on closing the gender wage gap is so slow that a woman born in 2017 will not see equal pay during her working life.

Nationally, women make 80 cents for every dollar earned by a man. If the earnings of women and men who are employed full-time, year-round change at the rate they have between 1959 and 2015, the gender wage gap in the United States will not close until 2059. The wage gap is projected to close first in Florida in 2038. In four states—North Dakota, Utah, Louisiana, and Wyoming—the wage gap will not close until the 22nd century.

“Women are a significant part of the workforce and economy of every state in the country. A slow crawl toward equal pay is a drag on each state’s economy, not to mention the U.S. economy overall,” said IWPR President Heidi Hartmann, Ph.D.

A recent IWPR analysis found that, if current trends continue, White women will not see equal pay until 2056, while women of color will have to wait much longer: Black women will not see pay equity until 2124, while Hispanic women must wait 231 more years until 2248.

“We will celebrate Equal Pay Day in two weeks on April 4, but there is no place in America where women can hope to see equal pay in the near future,” Dr. Hartmann said. “The United States is one of the most innovative economies in the world. We know that access to better jobs, child care, and paid leave would help close the stubborn wage gap between men and women. We shouldn’t have to wait several decades, even centuries, to solve this problem.”

The Institute for Women’s Policy Research (IWPR) is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization that conducts and communicates research to inspire public dialogue, shape policy, and improve the lives and opportunities of women of diverse backgrounds, circumstances, and experiences.