Tuesday, April 24, 2007

EQUAL PAY DAY, APRIL 24, 2007

What an exciting morning. In recognition of Equal Pay Day we, members of the American Association of University Women (AAUW), went to local RR stations. We talked to .commuters about the fact that women earn 77% of what men do. They must work until April to earn as much as a man did last year. We encouraged people to sign petitions asking our Governor, Speaker of the State Assembly and the Senate Majority Leader to pass the NYS Fair Pay Act. Commuters signed, laughed, supported our efforts and took the brochures and Pay Day® bars. Information about the new AAUW Research “Behind the Pay Gap” which proved that women are receiving less pay because of sex discrimination was given. See preceding AAUWNY Blog for details.

These are comments from AAUW members who were involved:

“It was a lovely experience. People were patient and cooperative. As soon as I mentioned the words "gender equity" three gals I was talking to told me to say no more, just pass them the clipboard (with petition)! One woman told me we were doing a good thing.”

"Just returned from the RR Station--------------very good experience. Most commuters were very receptive and were aware of Equal Pay Day through the media coverage. Gave out all the literature and bars."

We should all be paid equally when we do the same job regardless of gender.

Equal Pay Day

I just got the kids off on the bus. I have two - a daughter, almost 8 and a son who just turned 6. Why do I mention this? Aside from the shameless bragging, I wonder about their futures as all parents do. They are both extremely bright. They are both very curious, as most kids are. They both enjoy school.

But my daughter is likely to earn less than my son earns. Over her lifetime, her earnings will trail his by over half a million dollars. It will, statistically speaking, take her until April 24 - Equal Pay Day - to earn the same amount her brother earns by the previous December 31.

In the new report, Behind the Pay Gap, the AAUW Educational Foundation found that just one year after college graduation, women earn only 80 percent of what their male counterparts earn. Ten years after graduation, women fall further behind, earning only 69 percent of what men earn. Even after controlling for hours, occupation, parenthood, and other factors known to affect earnings, the research indicates that one-quarter of the pay gap remains unexplained and is likely due to sex discrimination. Over time, the unexplained portion of the pay gap grows.

Being a bottom-line thinker, I think about what that means for my daughter and my family. Well for starters, she will be less able to pay off the inevitable student loans which may necessitate additional support for her after college.

Wage discrimination goes beyond the first few years after college however, and indeed actually grows. Her total lifetime earnings will be lower - by over a half million dollars, on average - lowering her Social Security and pension benefits as well as her ability to save for retirement.

I'm not just a bottom-line thinker, though. I'm also an activist and a member of American Association of University Women. This gives me additional means to fight to end this discrimination, for myself and my family and for my daughter and her future.

I can read the full Behind the Pay Gap Report.

I can (and you can too) use the two-minute activist to write to legislators on various issues effecting women's economic security.

I can (and will) attend the AAUW NYS Convention in Saratoga Springs to network with other women and hear from Evelyn F. Murphy, author of Getting Even: Why Women Don't Get Paid Like Men and What To Do About It and leader of The WAGE Project.

I can start a WAGE (Women Are Getting Even) Club. There are resources to show me how.

I can see where my state ranks for women's pay equity.

I can make use of AAUW's Pay Equity Toolkit to find more ways to work towards equal pay.

I have a voice to fight pay disparity. I will use it. Not only for me. But for my daughter - and my son, as he will likely grow and one day have a wife of his own, who will make these issues his issues as well.

How will you use your voice?

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

NYIT seminar on human trafficking

April 17, North Shore Branch held a terrific program on trafficking and Hezbollah with Professor Edward Maggio who spoke on issues of human trafficking.

Regarding trafficking (one of our state issues) he noted the surprisingly large numbers involved and our responsibility to be aware of where our inexpensive clothes are made and to avoid companies using slave labor. Companies have responded to citizen pressure.

It was also noted at the meeting that the bills currently in the NYS legislature have problems. More on that when we get more information.

Many thanks to Marcia Singer of NYIT and Joyce Beucher and Barbara Kaim, c0-presidents of North Shore for arranging a super program.

Diane Haney

Helping Girls with STEM interests--program idea

I received this from Carolyn Hayek. It has some excellant ideas for programing. Note the $1000 mini-grants.
Diane Haney

For those interested in getting involved with the National GirlsCollaborative Project, I prepared some ideas below. Maybe some of thisinformation would work for some of the blogs and other listservs you arepart of.Carolyn HayekAAUW Liaison for Mountain Pacific RegionNational Girls Collaborative ProjectNational Girls Collaborative ProjectAdvancing the Agenda in Gender EquityFor Science, Technology, Engineering and MathematicsThe AAUW Educational Foundation, in partnership with the Puget Sound Centerfor Teaching, Learning and Technology (based in Bothell, Washington), hasreceived a substantial grant from the National Science Foundation to supportthe expansion of the National Girls Collaborative Project from a regionalorganization to a national support and financing network for projects whichencourage K-12 girls to study STEM subjects and to consider STEM careers.Individual AAUW members are encouraged to get involved in a variety of ways:1. Read about AAUW's role in this project in the most recent issue ofOutlook magazine and review the information about NGCP on the AAUW website:www.aauw.org/education/ngcp.2. Search the on-line program directory to see what programs are listed inyour area. If you or your branch are involved in programs which encouragegirls in STEM fields and the project is not listed, encourage the leader ofthe project to add it to the list and, at the same time, sign up to gete-mail news of NGCP activities. Projects to be listed include careerconferences, such as Expanding Your Horizons, and scholarship and studentrecognition programs, if they target or recognize girls in STEM fields.(Science, technology, engineering and math.)3. Use the information you find in the program directory and other areas ofthe website as a resource for possible branch programs or to find possiblepartners for community projects.4. Spread the news about this project to other members of your branch andcommunity. This project periodically holds conferences, throughout thecountry and through webcasting, that AAUW members are welcome to participatein.5. Plan a future branch project, along with a community partner, and applyfor one of the $1000 mini-grants that will be available in many parts of thecountry, starting in the fall of 2007. Watch the website for more details.6. Explore the Resources page of the National Girls Collaborative website:www.pugetsoundcenter.org/ngcp/resources/newsletter.html. Review past issuesof the newsletter for news of upcoming events and consider adding yourselfto the listserv to obtain future editions.7. Watch the NGCP video from the website:www.pugetsoundcenter.org/ngcp/resources/video.html. Share it with yourbranch.8. Recruit AAUW members and others interested in encouraging girls to pursueSTEM for leadership positions in this project. Each NGCP region has aChampions Board of community and business leaders as well as a steeringcommittee which works together to present local conferences and forums. Ifyou know of someone who might like to participate, share that informationwith your AAUW regional liaison. (See the list of names in the Outlookarticle and on the AAUW website.)9. Get involved and share your ideas. The National Girls CollaborativeProject and AAUW's role in this project are still evolving. There is roomfor the ideas and participation of anyone who supports the goal of improvinggender equity in science, technology, engineering and mathematics bysupporting programs which encourage girls to pursue those subject. It wouldbe wonderful for every branch to be part of the NGCP listserv, for everybranch to have a project listed in the program directory, for every branchto make sure at least one local community project is also listed, and forevery branch to have at least one member participating either in a localNGCP event or in a webcast.10. Come to Phoenix. AAUW members involved in the NGCP will be presenting aworkshop at our national convention in June and also hosting a networkingsession on June 30 during the time slot for special interest group meetings.We are looking forward to having many members participate.

Sunday, April 15, 2007

EQUAL PAY DAY APRIL 24

Join with American Association of University Women (AAUW) branch members on Tuesday April 24, 2007 as we continue to raise awareness to the fact that a woman earns only 77% of what a man does in a year. We know the cost of goods and services is the same for everyone.

A woman must work until April 2007 to make as much money as a man did in 2006. In her lifetime a female college graduate will earn (in 2006 dollars) $526,000 less then a male counterpart unless we end this cycle. AAUW’s Mission is ti advance equity for women and girls through advocacy, education and researdh.

We are planning to distribute materials relating to pay equity, including PayDay candy bars at commuter stations during the morning rush hour, at local colleges and a visit to legislators offices. Our purpose is to alert voters to this inequity and to request them to ask their legislators to vote for the NYS Fair Pay Bill A2712/S3936.

You are needed to spread this vital information. Are you, your daughters and granddaughters worth less then the men in your life? The NYS Pay Equity Coalition and Women on the Job are working together with AAUW on this project.

Give an hour on a Spring Day to make a difference. For information, petition and other materials contact me at public-policy@aauw-nys.org. Make this brief commitment to pay equity.