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10 Facts About Latino Women and Pay Inequity

Numbers Show Latinas Disproportionally Impacted by Unequal Pay

SOURCE: AP/ Damian Dovarganes

Lucia Torres works as a kitchen worker in downtown Los Angeles for minimum wage. Latinas make a median weekly salary of $518 dollars, compared to white women ($703), black women ($595), and Asian women ($751).

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Equal Pay Day tomorrow highlights the fact that women, particularly Latinas, still earn significantly less than men despite working just as hard and often harder. Additionally, Latinas’ earnings continue to lag behind those of their white, African American, and Asian counterparts. Latinas overall earn less, on average, than men and other women, which means that they must work longer for the same amount of pay. This puts Latinas at greater risk of economic insecurity for themselves and their families. Here are 10 key facts on this prominent sector of our nation:

1. 25 million—the number of women in the United States who identify as Hispanic or Latina according to the 2010 American Community Survey.

2. $518—the median weekly earnings for Latinas compared to white women ($703), black women ($595), and Asian women ($751). 

3. 56.5 percent—the percentage of working-age Latinas who were participating in the nation’s workforce in 2010, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

4. 29.1 percent—the percentage of Latino women who were uninsured in 2010.

5. 25 percent—the percentage of Hispanic families headed by women without a spouse in 2010, compared to 15 percent of white families, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

6. $39,566—the mean yearly earnings of Latinas with a bachelor’s degree in 2009 ($31,720 less than white men), according to the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2012 Statistical Abstract.

7. 60 cents—the amount Latinas earned for each dollar earned by white men in 2011, according to the American Association of University Women.

8. 92 percent—the percentage of Latinas 18 years and younger who were born in the United States, according to the 2010 U.S. Census.

9. Six times the national average—the rate at which Latina entrepreneurs start businesses in the United States. Between 2002 and 2007 Latina-owned businesses represented the fastest-growing segment of the women-owned business market.

10. 53,044—the number of businesses with paid employees that Latinas owned in 2007 according to the U.S. Census Bureau. Those firms had a combined $39,556,475,000 in sales value, receipts, or shipments.

Latinas constitute a growing segment of the U.S. population and as such their challenges and potential are important to the economic well-being of our nation, our communities, and our families. 

Vanessa Cárdenas is Director for Progress 2050 at the Center for American Progress.

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