Tuesday is Latina Equal Pay Day — here's why it's important to make that distinction


Equal Pay Day falls in the spring each each year — on a date that represents how far into the next year, on average, a woman must work to make what a man made in a single calendar year. But excluded from the Equal Pay Day narrative are an entire population of women: Latina women.

That's why Tuesday has been declared Equal Pay for Latina's Day. The common numbers surrounding the gender gap really only apply to white women, who make around 75% percent to the dollar of what white men earn, according to the American Association of University Women. For Latina women that number is a lowly 54%.

"It takes Latinas almost an entire extra year of full-time, year-round work in order to be paid what the average white man took home by December 31," the AAUW notes on its site. And so Tuesday, Nov. 1 marks the date at which a Latina woman has finally caught up to what a white man made in the previous year, only by this point, she's already almost another full year behind. 

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While many women of color fare worse than their white counterparts when it comes to the pay gap, Latina women have the largest deficit when compared to white men. Black women make about 63 cents to every white man's dollar — and Black Women's Equal Pay Day was observed in August.

According to the AAUW, access to education and the types of jobs that women take account for a portion of the startling inequality, but not all of it. Even a Latina woman who with the same educational credentials as a white or Asian woman makes less for the same work. 

There's no denying there's a long way to go before working women are treated equally — and there's also no denying that for some women, the chasm from here to equal pay is a lot wider than it is for others.