Equal Pay Now

Equal Pay Day 2019: April 2
At news organizations across the country, women and people of color are paid less than their coworkers doing the same job. In fact, women in the U.S. must work until April 2, 2019, to catch up to men’s earnings for 2018. For women of color, it takes even longer.

NewsGuild members are standing together for transparency and equal pay for all – Read the statement of The NewsGuild-CWA on Equal Pay Day.
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$10,169

- the difference in median salaries between men and women in 2017

$800,000

- the lifetime earnings loss for college-educated women compared to college-educated men

What is Equal Pay Day?1

Women in the U.S. must work until April 2, 2019, to catch up to men's earnings for 2018. For women of color, it takes even longer:

  • Black women - Aug. 22
  • Native women - Sept. 23
  • Latinas - Nov. 20
  • Asian women - March 5
People of color, both men and women, earn less on average than their white counterparts.

In News Organizations Across the Country, The Pay Gap is Real

NewsGuild studies conducted over the last several years show that disparities in pay are rampant at publications across the country: Women and people of color earn less on average than their counterparts – even at the most prestigious publications.

Take a look at the shocking wage gap at the Wall Street Journal:

Melanie Burney

"It was stunning news to find out that my pay isn't comparable to some of my colleagues. Absolutely stunning. Initially my concern was personal. But this is one of the most pressing civil rights issues of the day for women and journalists of color. We want to be paid based on the content of our journalism and not the color of our skin. We're still fighting."

-- Melanie Burney, education reporter, Philadelphia Inquirer

Dusty Christensen

 "A female co-worker seemed uncomfortable when she approached me in the parking lot and asked me how much money I made. I made a lot more than she did, even though we had the same educational experience and she had more work experience. Similar conversations with the same results sparked our union campaign. Fighting for equal pay is going to be a priority for our new union."

-- Dusty Christensen from the Daily Hampshire Gazette

Daniela Altimari

 "The whole issue of pay is shrouded in mystery. That's an advantage for the company. It's hard to assess if we're being paid fairly and whether there are discrepancies based on gender. Not knowing is the big issue."

Daniela Altimari, politics reporter at the Hartford Courant

Kristina Bui

"The union gave people a way to prove that everything they had suspected about inequity was true."

-- Kristina Bui, multi-platform editor, Los Angeles Times

Charlie Johnson

"When I learned a union had the right to pay data during the bargaining process — and that said data could be scientifically analyzed to determine if pay discrimination exists — I was floored. Why weren't people talking about this? It seemed like half-a-reason to unionize in and of itself."

Charlie Johnson, homepage editor, Chicago Tribune

The NewsGuild-CWA is standing up for equal pay.

We demand action:
  • Equal Pay
  • Transparency
  • Hiring policies that promote diversity

We have already made progress:
Union locals have gained access to pay data, noted discrepancies, armed our members with the info needed to win raises, and negotiated salaries and hiring practices that promote diversity.

Although management rarely admits that pay disparities exist, they often grant raises to individuals when confronted with the Guild's analysis of the data.

But there's still a long way to go…
Our power to win equal pay and fair employment practices rests on our ability to demand transparency, expose unfair pay practices, and demand that management address the problem across the board.

The NewsGuild gets results.

Philadelphia Inquirer, Daily News and Philly.com

NewsGuild members at the Philadelphia Inquirer, Philadelphia Daily News and Philly.com have narrowed a gender-based pay gap considerably since the Guild's first pay study was performed in 2016. During bargaining, the Guild consistently highlighted inequities for women and people of color. The union proposed individual pay adjustments to address the disparities, an examination of recruitment practices and re-establishment of a Newsroom Diversity Committee.

Salaries for newly hired female reporters, where the gap was 16%, are now on par with salaries for male reporters with the same level of experience and there has been an increase in the number of women hired. One new hire's pay went from about $47,000 to $54,000 in her second year of employment. But a sizable gap persists among editors with 15-20 years of service, with male editors making an average of approximately $12,000 more per year than female editors.

Wall Street Journal

A 2018 study by IAPE1096, The NewsGuild local that represents workers at Wall Street Journal and other Dow Jones properties, shows that median pay for full-time male newsroom employees is more than 15% higher than for female employees. During the 20-year period for which the local has data, the gap has been as high as 40%. What's more, white reporters earned nearly 17% more than reporters of color in the second quarter of 2018. 

Following the local's 2016 study, management refused to acknowledge inequities, but granted raises totaling $270,000 to 31 of 1,300 IAPE-represented employees, including at least one increase of 27 percent or approximately $14,870.

Los Angeles Times

A 2018 study by the Los Angeles Times Guild found that women and people of color in the newsroom made less than white men. On average, women earned approximately 86% of what men earned; people of color earned roughly 86% of what white people earned, and women of color made less than 70 percent of what white men earned.

The local has negotiated a tentative agreement that would require managers, when possible, to interview at least two candidates who are women or members of traditionally-underrepresented groups — including women, Black, Latino, Asian American, Native and LGBTQ journalists. Management has also agreed to form a joint diversity committee with the Guild to address issues of diversity in hiring, recruitment and retention.

And more!

Studies at the Washington Post, San Francisco Chronicle and Minneapolis Star Tribune also found that women and people of color earned less than their counterparts.

Ready to Fight for Equal Pay?

If you want to fight for equal pay, here are some steps you can take.

Have the Conversation

  • Talk with your coworkers. If you suspect there are disparities in pay – and there probably are – #HaveTheConversation. Share pay information with your colleagues.
  • If you work at a NewsGuild-represented publication, talk with unit leaders. Let them know your concerns.

Same PayGet the Information

  • The NewsGuild encourages all union locals to request pay information from management. (See Moving Forward on Pay Equity for guidelines on the specific information to request.)
  • Using the information provided by management, conduct pay equity studies – or seek assistance from the national union.
  • Analyze the pay studies and report the results to NewsGuild members and the national union.

Take Action

  • Wherever pay inequities are found, organize a public pressure campaign to expose and oppose them.
  • Offer wage assessments to individuals who believe their pay is unfair.
  • Highlight pay disparities and propose contractual remedies, including wage adjustments, ongoing monitoring, establishment of hiring practices that promote diversity, and formation of diversity committees. Negotiate robust anti-discrimination language protects women, people of color, transgender and gender nonconforming people.2

Keep the pressure on!

If you work at a non-union publication and want get organized, contact The NewsGuild.


Notes:

  1. U.S. Census Bureau, Sept. 2018, via the National Committee on Pay Equity.
  2. Employers don’t keep records identifying transgender and gender nonconforming people, but the LGBTQ Task Force reports that they are nearly four times more likely to have a household income of less than $10,000 per year than the general population.