Demanding What You're Worth: 5 Ways to Fight for Workplace Equality
October 5th, 2023, marks how far into the new year the average Latina must work to match what the average white, non-Hispanic man made the year before. That means the average Latina must work almost an entire additional year to catch up to what an average white man made the previous year.
Now, there is no magical solution to closing the wage gap for Latina women. But if we don’t start to actively work towards doing that, it’s estimated that we won’t achieve pay equality for 200 years. It’s not even an exaggeration, as much as we wish it were.
We need to raise awareness, but at the same time, Latinas need to continue to develop the skills to get ourselves ahead. We can help change the system while helping ourselves as a collective solution to the problem. Read on for five practical ways you can start to make a difference.
It can be hard to know what you should be paid when you have yet to learn what other people with similar skill sets are earning. Start by doing your research on sites like Payscale and Salary. That way, you can reference what a fair wage looks like for your position.
Now that you know what you should be getting paid, it’s crucial to learn how to demand and negotiate it. This Luz Community workshop will help you learn the right tactics to get paid equitably, influencing your boss and HR to be on your side where merit pay doesn’t exist, and provide strategies to increase your chances to get a raise with documented proof in a system where performance reviews don’t work.
Lastly, know your rights at work. Did you know it may be illegal in your state for your employer to ask about what you previously earned? Are you aware that you can file a claim under the Equal Pay Act? The better informed you are, the better you can educate those around you and advocate for equality in your workplace.
Make A Change Where You Can
If you’re an employer or in a position to make or influence decisions related to hiring personnel, you can support pay transparency by eliminating rules that prohibit workers from asking about or discussing their pay. You can ensure transparency by disclosing salary ranges in job postings, avoiding using salary history when deciding what to pay someone or whether or not to hire them, and providing clear information about bonuses and career paths for your employees.
When given the opportunity, it’s crucial that we enact change and work towards lifting up others. Even though you might’ve struggled to get there, the goal is to make other Latinas’ career paths easier, never harder!
Make Your Voice Heard and Your Vote Count
Voting for representatives taking a stand on Latina Equal Pay is crucial to change. The Latina wage gap stems from many discriminatory practices, unequal education opportunities, racial biases, and much more. It is a systemic issue that should be rooted out through policies that demand accountability and transparency.
Identifying your local elected officials and where they stand on Latina pay equality, keeping up with what they’re working on, and asking candidates running for office about their plan to close the gender and racial pay gap is a great way to give equity the attention it deserves.
Support Organizations Fighting For Equal Pay
Fighting for economic and political parity for Latinas is no easy feat. Luckily there are many organizations doing the work. Equal Pay Today is an organization seeking to eradicate the long-standing gender wage gap impacting women’s economic security, families, and communities of color. Justice for Migrant Women aims to ensure that all migrant women are guaranteed human and civil rights. Lean In is an organization advocating for better public policies and a more equitable workplace. And LCLAA is the leading national organization for Latino workers and their families, to name only a few.
There are many ways you can support these organizations in their efforts to ensure workplace equality for Latinas and other women of color. Consider donating, signing up for one of their virtual or IRL events, and keeping up with them on social media to learn more about their work.
Continue Raising Awareness
Social Media is a powerful tool that can help us spotlight important issues affecting Latina women. Luckily, there are so many ways you can advocate for #LatinaEqualPay with the tap of a finger.
- Follow @theluzmedia on Instagram and join the conversation using the hashtag #LatinaEqualPay. You can help us spread the word by resharing our posts and editorials.
- Have a story to share? Tag us so we can boost!
- Start your own conversation by creating a Twitter thread. You can tag your local representatives and elected officials to ask about what they’re doing to close the gap.
- Follow the #LatinaEqualPay hashtag on IG to stay up-to-date on news and events.
How will you choose to get involved today and year-round?