Public News Service notes the irony:
Over the weekend, working moms might have been treated to cards, flowers and even breakfast in bed. But today, life is back to normal – and for Washington women, that means earning less per hour on the job and receiving fewer workplace benefits than men.
“Washington’s Working Women 2010,” a new report by the Economic Opportunity Institute (EOI), indicates the economic progress of women in the Evergreen State has stalled. Its comparison of jobs and wages shows almost a $5-per-hour gap in median wages between women and men – largely because of the types of work they do.
However, report author Marilyn Watkins says, in the deep recession of the last two years, both sexes have been affected by businesses cutting hours and benefits.
Our report notes the gulf separating men’s and women’s earnings has expanded over the past two decades. Women’s average monthly paychecks were just 63% of men’s in 2008, compared to 67% in 1990. And while benefits like paid sick days and paid family leave are critical for women, who are often the primary caregivers for children and elderly parents, 41% of Washington workers – 1.2 million people – can’t take a paid sick day at work.
While women have experienced fewer job losses since the start of the recession, inequality on payday has persisted – with men earning substantially higher wages than women in every industry in Washington. And lower wages lead to higher rates of poverty among women, especially for mothers with young children.