Editor’s note: Vision 2020 staff member Cheryl Soltis shares her view on women earning more money than men.
On Sept. 1, The Wall Street Journal published an article headlined “Young Women’s Pay Exceeds Male Peers.’” As a childless, master’s degree-holding 20-something, I applaud women out-earning men for a change. Although these women have received a pay boost early in their careers, it does not help them manage childcare pressures and other obligations decades later. Often, the pay balance tips in favor of men again. Our gender shouldn’t predispose us to lesser amounts of income, especially when women often work long hours only to earn, on average, 78 cents for every dollar a man earns, according to The White House Project’s “Benchmarking Women’s Leadership” report released in November.
The solution to the pay gap won’t come from hiring managers offering larger salaries to young women at the entry level. Rather, these issues need attention from women nationwide, in all stages of their careers and families. Next month, when Vision 2020 begins in Philadelphia, two women from every state will gather to share ideas, draw inspiration, and renew a commitment to the women of this nation that they will not suffer because of their gender.
There is something about this point in history—where women are highly educated, motivated and capable leaders, who are being kept out of positions of power — that is drawing women to unite across professions, across political party lines and across socio-economic backgrounds to work together to achieve equality.
I hope in the coming years that I can read about women attaining equality in every stage of life.