Analysis: Things are getting worse for women in Georgia

The Peach State finished next to last in annual ranking of best states for women’s equality

We’ve come a long way, baby, but we still have a long way to go. That’s especially true in Georgia, where an annual analysis shows women’s equality in the state is worse this year than it was in 2021.

As Women’s Equality Day — August 26 — approaches, it’s a good time to check in on the gender gap. Unfortunately, the gender gap in 21st century America has only expanded, according to the World Economic Forum’s ranking of 146 countries based on gender equality.

ExploreAnalysis: Georgia is nation’s 5th worst state to have baby in

Although women are more than 50% of the U.S. population, they are only about 27% of its legislators and 25% of Fortune 500 board seats.

Each year, financial website WalletHub analyzes data from all 50 states to determine the best and worst ones for women’s equality. For 2022, it compared the states across three key dimensions: workplace environment, education and health, and political empowerment.

It then evaluated those dimensions using 17 relevant metrics, each of which was graded on a 100 point scale, with a score of 100 representing the most favorable conditions for women’s equality.

When the scores were tallied, the Peach State finished at No. 49 — down from No. 45 last year — with a score of just 43.99. Last year’s score was 46.93.

ExploreAnalysis: Georgia is the sixth worst state for women’s equality 2021

Within the three key dimensions, Georgia finished:

  • Workplace environment: 46th
  • Education and health: 44th
  • Political empowerment: 38th

Among the relevant metrics, Georgia ranked:

  • Entrepreneurship rate gap: 26th
  • Political representation gap: 38th
  • Earnings gap: 40th
  • Unemployment rate gap: 40th
  • Executive positions gap: 44th
  • Minimum-wage workers gap: 49th

“The gender gap in health and survival is evident in maternal mortality rates but more broadly is largely related to issues of race and class,” Claire McKinney, assistant professor in the Government Department at William & Mary, told WalletHub. “Maternal mortality in the United States is over double the rate of many other industrialized nations and Black and Indigenous women experience much higher rates of maternal mortality than white women. Maternal mortality is highest in the Southern United States, which, not by coincidence, is also the region that largely did not expand Medicaid access under the Affordable Care Act.”

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