How the Pay Gap Affects You: Best States
If you live here, you're better off than most.
By Diana Pearl
In the race to close the nation's ever present gender pay gap, these states are outshining the rest.
This month, Minnesota passed the Women's Economic Security Act, a multi-faceted law that ensures fairness for women in the workplace. The law's nine parts include wage disclosure protection, better protections and accommodations for pregnant women and new mothers, among other amendments.
Last year, Boston's mayor, Thomas Menino, stated his goal to make the city the first in the U.S. to eliminate the pay gap, making it the "premier city for working women." A big goal to be sure, but theyre working to make it happen. The city is asking companies to sign the 100% Talent: The Boston Womens Compact to join in their efforts to understand the wage gap, close it, and gage how well they've done in doing so. The women of Massachusetts also has a big player on their side: Senator Elizabeth Warren, a strong supporter of equal pay.
Women may only make up less than 10 percent of Fortune 500 CEO's, but in Michigan, General Motors named its first female CEO, Mary Barra, this past January. Did we mention that shes the first woman to hold the top job at a major car companyever?
Lets hope that our capital city is setting the tone for the pay gap throughout the nation. Washington, D.C. In the race to close the wage gap, the city is the winner by quite a bit. D.C. women make 90 percent of what a man makes5 percent more than any other state, according to the American Association of Unviersity Women. In second place is Maryland, and it can only be assumed that a significant number of workers living in Maryland work in D.C. as well. But thats not all of the Districts accolades. According to a study done by WalletHub, they also rank first in professional opportunities for women.
This one may surprise youWalletHub also says that Alabamawho ranks fifth from last in the measure of pay gap by stateranks first for the highest female-to-male executive ratio (74.48 percent), meaning that they have the greatest gender balance in the boardroom of any state. Who came in second, however, will surprise no oneWashington, D.C.
On a larger scale, the wage gap isnt just about equal pay, but fair and equal treatment as well. And when talking about fair treatment of women in the workforce, the subject of rights for working moms is bound to come up. In that realm, it is the state of Oregon that takes top honors, according to WalletHub.
Making laws isnt the only way to make a difference in ending the pay gap. At the end of last year, the office of the Governor of the state of Connecticut, Dannel P. Malloy, published a report on pay equity designed to encourage companies and employers to shrink the gap between men and womens pay.
Also last year, Vermont passed a new package, An Act Relating to Equal Pay, that demands state contractors to determine pay using job-related reasons only. The act also assures that workers are able to request a more flexible schedulea provision that will without a doubt benefit the states working mothers.
California is home to the nations best paid female executive, Safra Ada Catz, the CFO and President of tech giant Oracle, who brought home a cool $44.3 million in 2013, according to FindTheBest Companies.