Congressman Alcee L. Hastings (D-FL) made the following statement in support of Latina Equal Pay Day, which highlights the gender wage gap between men and women, which is especially evident for Latina women:
“Over 50 years have passed since the Equal Pay Act was enacted. And yet, equal pay for equal work still ceases to be a reality for all Americans. On average, women earn only 77 cents for every dollar paid to their male counterparts, regardless of race. The disparity for Latina women is even larger, who on average earn a mere 56 cents for every dollar made by similarly situated non-Hispanic men. Accordingly, to earn what the average non-Hispanic man made in the year before a Latina woman must work more than 21 months until October 8. This wage discrepancy amounts to an annual loss of $23,279.
“This congress, I am a proud co-sponsor of the Paycheck Fairness Act and the Fair Minimum Wage Act, two bills that would take significant steps to improve pay equity and increase penalties on employers paying discriminatory wages, however more must be done to ensure that all women can participate fully and equally in our economy. For these reasons, I am also proud to support When Women Succeed, America Succeeds, the Democratic agenda aimed at addressing the most pressing economic issues facing women and minorities in our nation today. This agenda highlights the need for realizing paycheck fairness, investing in job training and employment opportunities for women, improving workers rights through family and maternity leave, and raising the minimum wage. These initiatives are an essential part of ensuring wage and employment equality for women. I pledge to continue working towards this important goal. As we mark Latina Equal Pay Day, I once again reiterate my commitment to working to end wage discrimination in our country once and for all.”
Congressman Alcee L. Hastings serves as Senior Member of the House Rules Committee, Ranking Democratic Member of the U.S. Helsinki Commission, and Co-Chairman of the Florida Delegation.