Gender pay gap is the difference between a man and a woman average pay. It can also refer to the variance between the number of males compared to the number of female workers. Statistics continue to illustrate that for every dollar earned by males, females earn around 81 cents (or less) in the United States. It is long past time to close the gap. Reduced‐form specifications indicate that the extent of collective bargaining coverage is also negatively related to the gender pay gap.
Together, the wage compression and collective bargaining results suggest that the high wage floors that are associated with highly centralized, unionized wage setting raise women’s relative pay, since women are at the bottom of the wage distribution in each country (Blau et al, 2003).
According to the National Organization for Women, Women still are not receiving equal pay for equal work, let alone equal pay for work of equal value. Even with the fact that women’s careers are interrupted more than men for family obligations.
They are mostly faced with more pressure to ‘opt out’ of work for childbearing and child rearing. This even calls for better compensation as women can multitask better than men, which is an added skill in the workplace. In her book ‘Why Women Still Can’t Have It All’, Anne-Marie Slaughter wrote about the struggles of working mothers. She stated that the top jobs are incompatible with family responsibilities and that women are still evaluated by men’s standards. She also stressed that the kinds of work women are channeled into still aren’t valued.
Patriarchy theory which stresses the Institutions of male power in society is one of the sociological theories have encouraged the gender pay gap. Patriarchy is the set of institutional structures (like property rights, access to positions of power, and relationship to sources of income) which are based on the belief that men and women are dichotomous and unequal categories (Little, 2016). This can be viewed as the root of women’s oppression and that women are oppressed even in non-capitalist societies.
Institutional sex discrimination is the negative behavior towards another based on their sex. Institutional sex discrimination is common against women and can occur in each type of HR policy from the recruitment and selection of an individual into an organization, through his/her role assignments, training, pay, performance evaluations, promotion, and termination. It also includes a faculty hiring only male graduate assistants or a coach allowing only males to play during an intramural game.
However, Feminism which is the critical analysis of the way gender differences in society structure social inequality (Little, 2016). Feminist belief that society equality should exist between the sexes and the social movement aimed at achieving that goal. Based on the philosophy that biology is not the destiny. I strongly agree with the feminist because I believe that both sexes should be given equal opportunity.
In conclusion, there are Anti-discrimination laws such as the Equal Pay Act (1963), Title VII of the Civil Rights Act (1964), Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act (2009) and Paycheck Fairness Act. However, these laws do not target all the sources of the pay gap, strategies like ‘Lean In’ provide practical results for many women but put the burden of change on women themselves. Changing social structure more generally could resolve the gap, but how to implement such a change? If these laws are properly implemented, it will reduce the gender pay gap.