August 13 marks the date that Black women have to work into 2020 to finally catch up to what white, non-Hispanic men earned in 2019. The day helps to raise awareness about the wage gap for Black women and its impact on them and their families. The goal is equal pay for equal work. Black women can’t achieve gender equity without racial equity. “To know that just because of the color of your skin or your gender that you would be paid less than the person working next to you, how could you feel whole or complete?” said Renee Killings of IAM Local 2003.
“Thank God for union contracts,” Diane Campbell of IAM Local 778 said. “The union has been a blessing because it’s somebody to fight for you where you may not have that voice or you may not have that soap box to speak on, so I have the union fighting for me.” She said the union has moved the playing field for her and paved the way for others.
On Black Women’s Equal Pay Day, everyone must work together to dismantle barriers and systems of oppression holding women of color back: occupational segregation, low pay, health inequities, racial gaps in education, & more. The A. Philip Randolph (APRI) Institute and the Coalition of Black Trade Unionists (CBTU) are two AFL-CIO constituency groups that fight for racial and economic justice.