Bigger wage gaps, more economic insecurity ahead for Washington women

Press Release | December 15, 2011

State budget cuts, declining workplace benefits, and a widening wage gap are putting Washington’s women at risk for more economic instability and poverty in 2012, according to a new report from the Economic Opportunity Institute. Key findings:

Women continue to earn less than men overall – and the gap is widening

  • Women brought home just 63% of men’s monthly earnings in 2010 – an average monthly difference of nearly $1,900. That ratio is worse than 1991, when women made 65% of men’s average monthly pay.
  • Men earn more than women at every education level. Men with less than a high school degree out-earn women by more than $7,000 annually. For men and women with a graduate or professional degree, that difference grows to more than $27,500 per year.

Washington firms are less likely to provide every kind of workplace benefit now than in 2002

  • In 2002, 76% of firms provided health insurance to full-time employees; just 54% provided the benefit in 2010.
  • In 2002, 60% of firms offered retirement benefits to full-timers, down to 36% in 2010.
  • In 2002, 56% of firms offered sick leave to full-timers, down to 44% in 2010.
  • Part-time workers – the majority of whom are women – are far less likely to receive every type of benefit. In 2010, just 15% of businesses provided retirement benefits, 22% provided vacation, and 11% offered health benefits to part-time workers.

Read the full press release »

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Posted in State Economy, Women in the Workforce