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Center for American Progress

RELEASE: On Black Women’s Equal Pay Day, CAP Outlines the State of African American Women in the U.S. Economy
Press Release

RELEASE: On Black Women’s Equal Pay Day, CAP Outlines the State of African American Women in the U.S. Economy

Washington, D.C. — Today, equal pay advocates will observe Black Women’s Equal Pay Day, which represents the day in which the earnings of African American women—who, on average, earn just 60 cents for every dollar paid to white, non-Hispanic men—will catch up with the earnings of their white, non-Hispanic male counterparts from the previous calendar year.

As advocates observe Black Women’s Equal Pay Day, the Center for American Progress released a fact sheet detailing the state of African American women in the U.S. economy.

As CAP’s fact sheet demonstrates, African American women play a critical role in their families’ economic security: In 2013, 66.9 percent of African American mothers were their household’s breadwinners. African American women also play a central role in the U.S. economy. From 1997 to 2013, for example, African American women-owned businesses grew by 258 percent, and African American women-owned firms generate an estimated $52.6 billion in revenue per year.

Despite African American women’s vital importance to their families and the economy, they face unique barriers in the workplace that can undermine their ability to thrive. African American women are more likely to earn less than their white female counterparts and often lack access to the very policies they need to fulfill their responsibilities at work and at home—such as earned sick days, paid family and medical leave, a right to request flexible work arrangements, and access to high-quality, affordable child care.

In addition to the fact sheet, CAP also released a column on the importance of observing Black Women’s Equal Pay Day from the perspective of two Millennial women of color.

Read the fact sheet: African American Women in the U.S. Economy by Kaitlin Holmes and Jocelyn Frye

Read the column: Why Black Women’s Equal Pay Day Matters by Gabrielle Bozarth and Naomi Kellogg

For more information or to speak with an expert, contact Chelsea Kiene at [email protected] or 202.478.5328.