Equal Pay Day underscores pay inequality based on gender
CHICAGO, IL â€“ Illinois Lt. Governor Sheila Simon rallied with federal, state and local officials and members of the community at Daley Plaza in support of pay equality for women. The annual observation of Equal Pay Day marks how far into 2013 a woman must work, on average, to earn as much as a man did in 2012.
â€œAs a longtime advocate for womenâ€™s rights and equality, I recognize that we are not yet where we need to be as a society,â€ Lt. Governor Simon said. â€œWe will continue to work together to ensure all people earn equal pay for equal work.â€
Despite great strides, employment discrimination and unfairness in the workplace have persisted. Illinois women earn only 77 cents to every $1 a man earns, regardless of education, occupation or experience. Throughout her lifetime, a woman with a college degree could lose up to $1.2 million due to the wage gap.
In recognition of the day, Simon was joined by Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky, Attorney General Lisa Madigan, Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle, and representatives from other government agencies and non-profit organizations.
â€œPay equity isnâ€™t just a womenâ€™s issue, it is a family issue and a community issue,â€ said Simon. â€œOur state is stronger when all workers receive equal pay for equal work, and I will continue to work with advocates to ensure pay equity is achieved.â€