Activities & Organizations

Women weigh in on wage gap

Women all over the world are missing out on money they are qualified to earn for new cars, houses or even a vacation out of the country. By settling for a subpar salary that a potential employer offers, a woman
could make $1 million less than her male colleague who possesses the same credentials.
“If you are letting the wage gap happen by not negotiating for your salary, you’re leaving a lot of money on the table that you won’t have in your lifetime to use,” said Dorrie Sieberg, Women Are Getting Even program manager.
The Start Smart Salary Negotiation Workshop held on Friday at UH taught women how to negotiate their starting salaries to earn the money they deserve. Sieberg demonstrated the importance of making a budget before accepting a salary that may be too low and how a woman can negotiate with a potential employer to get a higher starting salary.
Some women may not even know if they’re being paid less than the men they work with.
Women’s Resource Center Director Beverly McPhail reminded everyone of a woman who had finished her career at a company before learning she wasn’t getting the same pay as her male counterparts.
“Lilly Ledbetter worked for Goodyear, and she didn’t know about the salary discrepancy until she retired,” McPhail said. “So all those years, she’d been getting paid substantially less than a man working in the same position.”
To ensure women are making fair, equal wages, the WAGE website has a link that demonstrates how to compare salary rates for specific positions at different companies in their area.
“This is free information that you can access through our website anytime you want,” Seiberg said.
Knowing how much people are earning locally can assist in effective negotiation by giving women an idea of how much they should ask for.
Having this workshop at UH in the future can help to continue educating women about wage discrimination and how to prevent it from happening to them. Coordinators of the program at UH intend to host the workshop at the University at least once a semester.

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