05 Oct It’s The 21st Century, Yet The Gender Pay Gap’s Existence Is Still Undeniable
This year is the beginning of a new decade. A new age means letting go of things from the past that is deemed ‘dated’ or ‘irrelevant’. Frankly, the world is ”canceling’ things which are considered bad for people, especially people in the workforce. Think about stuff like the gender pay gap, workplace prejudice, and marginalization in work environments. Actually, not all workforce-y problems are gone (yet). In fact, looks like some of the stuff that I mentioned earlier are able to stick around in this new decade. How can it be? Is it considered relevant in this day and age?
Sure, hosts don’t start their shows with ‘ladies and gentlemen’ anymore these days, since the inclusion of people’s pronouns which aren’t ‘ladies and gentlemen’ are (finally) increasing in the past 5 years. World-renowned companies such as mainstream publishers, studios, and enterprises are (again, finally) opening their arms to welcome diverse voices to lead them in a better direction. Speaking of opening arms, people in high places listening to customers (and public opinion, frankly) has become a trend that results in a mildly good relationship between the producing side and the consuming side.
With all those changes, you might think ‘we’ve included everyone in the labor force by now, even those outside of so-called men and women, then how can a problem as simple-sounding as a gap between men and women still around in this day and age?’
To answer that, let’s circle back five years into the past. American actress and director, Troian Bellisario did a lie detector test hosted by Vanity Fair which video was uploaded on YouTube on February 10, 2016. The last question she got in the test was ‘what’s your least favorite thing in the (entertainment) industry?’ which she bluntly answered ‘gender quality payment’. Not only did her fellow female co-stars (who were in the same room) applaud her for saying that, the male staff who supervise the test also applaud her after answering honestly.
‘But that was from five years ago, it’s probably gone by now!’ might cross your mind. Well, the revelation didn’t stop there.
If you’d like something a bit more recent, CNBC uploaded a video under the title ‘6 Ways To Convince Someone The Gender Pay Gap Is Real’ on April 11, 2018. Through that video, CNBC didn’t just state that men and women are still paid differently for the same job that they do, but they also reveal the existence of people who believes that women and man are paid equally.
Quoting Ellevest, CNBC shared a fact which states 61% of men in the international workforce believes that men make more than women for doing the same jobs, which means the other 39% deny the fact that wage inequality is real or they simply doesn’t believe in it.
Unfortunately, the gender wage gap aged well for something that should’ve disappeared a long time ago. Everyone is part of the workforce by now, even people who don’t identify themselves as men and women, yet this ‘basic’ issue dividing men and women is still undeniably impactful. How? On May 25, 2021, Tom Spiggle wrote a piece in Forbes about why this unjust gender-based culture is still around.
According to Spiggle, one of the most significant causes of the gender pay gap is a situation called ‘sticky floors’, disadvantages that workers face because they are a woman. This hullabaloo is heavily related to prejudice against women, both in terms of work and social life. When there’s a capable child-caring mother working for a company, that company would hold back from giving the woman a higher position and a higher salary. Why!? Assumptions. The company assumes that she has too much on her hands already.
‘Taking care of her children, handling work situations, running all her daily assignments, that lady’s hands are full!’ Says the company’s inner circle, which assumptions have caused them to be afraid of the risks that they could cause if they give the child-caring female staff a higher responsibility and higher salary. This ‘assuming habit’ is just an edge of a web, on the other edge is the unbalanced responsibility women still upholds until now.
Whether they work in a daily basis or not, women are still tied to a lot of life responsibilities. Child-caring is the one people keep bringing up. I know, seems pretty traditional. Well, nothing is wrong with traditional responsibilities and activities, what’s wrong however is the unbalancing cycle they creates. Some could say that child-caring women can battle those ‘assumptions’ made by companies that they work for by hiring a child-care service. Well, if they don’t do that, there are multiple different causes for that.
Yes, some women might prefer taking care of their children without any outside ‘interference’, but some other women decide to allocate their money to other things that could be more important than hiring a care service because the money (which they receive via salary) aren’t enough to make ends meet if they hire someone to babysit their children.
With that in mind, it’s the 21st century and yet, women are still unequally paid, creating a tangent web involving dated work cultures that refuse to change as the start line and unbalanced daily responsibilities as the finish line. In recent years, awareness of the gender pay gap has been increased in a good chunk of media, proofing its existence while showing a hopeful potential of a world without income inequality.