It's hard out here for working moms. Balancing children and a career is no small feat, and it's made even more frustrating by the fact that working women earn less than men. If you're looking to lighten the load, there are plenty of ways to help working moms on Equal Pay Day. Seeing as moms have such full, hectic schedules, your assistance and support are sorely needed.
Here are the statistics you may have heard rattled off time and time again: Women make 79 cents to a man's dollar, on average, and that gap increases for hispanic and black women. Thus, Equal Pay Day was created to show how far into the year women have to work in order to "catch up" with men's earnings. The real kicker? Equal pay day for black women is on July 31, Native women have to wait until Sept. 21, and Latina women must take nearly a full year until their contributions are recognized, settling for Nov. 2.
But how about moms? It might not be so surprising to hear that Equal Pay Day for mothers won't happen until June 4th. A study even found that, in estimating the salaries offered to mothers versus non-mothers, " mothers were offered on average $11,000 less than childless women and $13,000 less than fathers." This bias is real, and needs to be combatted. Below are a few ways to help support working moms and all of the extra hurdles that they face.
Support The Paycheck Fairness Act
One way to ensure that women are properly paid? Allow them to actually discuss their salaries with co-workers without being fired. As the National Women's Law Center explains, The Paycheck Fairness Act "would greatly enhance employees’ ability to learn about wage disparities and to evaluate whether they are experiencing wage discrimination."
Donate To Help Single Parents
Organizations like Single Parent Advocate help ease the burden put on working parents who are trying to raise kids, take care of a home, and manage their careers, all at the same time. In providing "auto repair, school supplies, food, toys, beds, family portraits, computer assistance" to families that need such resources, single parents are thus able to perform better in their given jobs and careers, helping their families get ahead, too.
Help With Childcare For Sick Kids
When kids are sick, sometimes it just isn't possible to stay home from work. Asking family or friends to help out isn't always an option, either. Day care services for moderately sick children are an awesome solution, albeit one that isn't totally widespread as of yet. One such organization, Rainbow Station, allows for franchising, hoping to extend the help to as many working moms as possible.
Acknowledge Your Own Bias
In an article for Fortune, Katharine Zaleski acknowledges instances in the office in which she recalls treating working mothers unfairly, through various micro-aggressions. Realizing that non-moms often "undervalue mothers’ contributions because they count hours logged in the office and not actual work," Zaleski was able to see that mothers' productivity extends beyond their schedules. Assessing your own view of working mothers, and being completely honest with what informs that perspective, helps better the situation for them in the long run.
Improve Access To Quality Childcare
Accessibility to high-quality childcare is by no means a given, but solutions are available. Let your employer know about ways to help working moms get childcare more efficiently, so that, once more, career versus children is not a choice anyone is forced to make.
The fact that women in the United States are still not paid as much as their male counterparts is bad enough. Let's not allow the gap between working moms and everyone else to widen as well.