Working for Less: Gender Inequality in the Workplace | Net Impact

Working for Less: Gender Inequality in the Workplace

The call for equal pay in the workplace is being heralded from all corners of society. The omnipresent nature of the topic was even on full display at the Oscars. In her acceptance speech, American actress Patricia Arquette brought the issue to millions of viewers demanding "It's our time to have wage equality once and for all, and equal rights for women in the United States of America.” Despite the increased spotlight, there is much work to be done. As the deadline to achieve the United Nations’ Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) fast approaches, the world is debating an even more comprehensive set of universal targets and goals to drive investment and action. Known as the Sustainable Development Goals, or SDGs, these new global – and universal – targets will touch millions of lives. With an emphasis on equitable development, the economic empowerment of women will be pivotal to the UN’s Post-2015 Development Agenda. Yet women across the world lag behind men in realizing their full potential as economic actors. In a recent study by the World Economic Forum, The Global Gender Gap Report 2014, the United States ranked 65th out of 131 countries in a wage equality survey. Women in the United States earned 66% of what men earned. Although this reflects a 1% increase over 2013, women still only earn roughly two-thirds of what men earn for similar work. This report also shows that on a global level there is no country in which a woman earns as much as a man. Investing in women is good business. So why are women being left behind? What are the barriers to achieving wage equality and how can we break them down?