What is #EqualPayDay? Atlanta businesses donate 20 percent of sales to highlight gender pay gap

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Iceland is working on legislation to make sure men and women are paid equally by 2022.

It took all of 2017 and until Tuesday, April 10, 2018 for women to catch up to what men earned in 2017 alone, according to LeanIn.org, a nonprofit founded by Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg that focuses on the advancement of women and addresses gender inequalities worldwide.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, women in the U.S. working full-time and salaried jobs in 2015 earned approximately 20 percent less than what men in the same positions earned.

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In 2016, women working full-time or with salary wages had median usual weekly earnings that were 82 percent of those of male full-time wage and salary workers, a slight improvement from the year before.

For working women of color, the gap is even wider when compared to both white men and white women.

In fact, according to a 2017 report from the Institute for Women's Policy Research, black and Hispanic women with either full or part-time jobs typically earn 38 percent less and 46 percent less than white men, respectively.

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In an effort to raise awareness for the gender pay gap in America, businesses across the country are donating 20 percent of their sales to organizations that support women and families for #EqualPayDay on April 10.

“With the help of adidas, Lyft, P&G, and Reebok—all leaders in the push for equality in the workplace—we’re asking consumers to think about the impact of getting 20% less as they make purchases on April 10,” the organization wrote on its website.

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Adidas customers on Tuesday will see #20PercentCounts messages like “Women give 100%. They get paid 20% less. Level the field.” Lyft is adding unequal signs to cars in the app and asking riders how they would feel if their trip ended with 20 percent of the way to go.

In partnership with LeanIn.org, multiple Atlanta businesses are also participating in Equal Pay Day 2018 to raise awareness for the gender pay gap, including King of Pops and Kendra Scott.

Other local businesses participating include

  • Baby Tommy's Taste of New York
  • Fig & Flower Natural Beauty
  • General Assembly Atlanta
  • Kale Me Crazy (Brookhaven)
  • Orangetheory Fitness Emory Point
  • Valeo Dance Fitness Studio

According to a LeanIn news release, the businesses are donating 20 percent of sales to organizations that support women and families, such as the American Association of University WomenBoys & Girls Clubs of AmericaDress for Success and Feeding America.

Businesses will also donate 38 percent and 46 percent respectively on Black Women’s Equal Pay Day (Aug. 7) and Latinas Equal Pay Day (Nov. 1).

Atlanta is joining more than 30 other cities in the U.S. participating.

Read more about the campaign at Leanin.org.