April 17, 2012 11:46pm - Tallahassee, FL
Men and women can vote. Men and woman can even run for president of the United States of America, but when it comes to earning a paycheck the right to earn the same dollar amount is still up in the air.
Brittany Belcher is a woman living in Florida. She like many women in the Sunshine State, on average, do not make the same amount of money as men.
She says, "I think if you have worked just as hard, other races, other sexualities, male and female, you should be paid the same amount of money."
A study from the National Partnership for Women and Families breaks down state by state how much a wage gap there is between men and women.
In Florida, the median pay for a woman working full-time is $32, 762 a year. For a man it's $40, 731 a year. That's a difference of $7, 969.
In Georgia, the median pay for a woman working full-time is $34, 709 a year. For a man it's $43,344 a year. That's a difference of $8,635.
Jennifer Henderson, a Tallahassee resident, says, "I work for the state of Florida and I do believe there is a gap between women and men's salaries here in Florida and I definitely think in the public sector where I work there is definitely a gap, there's that window, that glass ceiling that women are trying to punch through."
That glass ceiling is even thicker for minority women. The study shows that nationally women make 77 cents for every dollar a man earns. For African American women that falls to 62 cents. And Hispanic women make just more than half, at 54 cents, for every dollar a man makes.
In Florida, African American women are paid 71 cents for every dollar a man makes and Latinas earn just 66 cents to that dollar.
And in Georgia, African American women earn 72 cents for every dollar, and Latinas make 55 cents for every dollar a man makes.
That doesn't add up to many dollars and cents, and many say it doesn't make a lot of common sense either.
Tallahassee resident, Karl Arant says, "I think it's a shame in this day in age in the 21st century that there is a disparity between men and women's wages, it's certainly not going to help the state or the state's economy grow if women from around the country and around the world don't feel they can make a fair and decent wage."
If the wage gap was eliminated, a working woman in Florida would have enough money for more than a year's worth of food, five months of mortgage payments, eight months of rent and more than 2,000 gallons of gas. These are facts women hope will fuel change for the future.
For more on the study and to see numbers in other states go to nationalpartnership.org/gap.