By Leilani Carver-Madalon, Opinion Contributor

Let’s begin with the persisting pay gap. You may have heard that women, in general, earn 80 cents for every dollar earned by men, but there are problems with this widely cited figure. First, it doesn’t account for the experience of women of color for whom the pay gap is even larger. The other problem with the 80-cents-for-every-dollar statistic is it only compares how much men and women are paid in one year. When you take into account numerous years it’s actually worse. The 80 cents figure doesn’t take into account that women are more likely to leave work to take care of family or children. The Institute for Women’s Policy Research compared men and women’s earnings over a 15-year period and found that women on average actually made only 49 cents for every dollar that men made.

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