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44According to the most recent statistics from the U.S. Census Bureau, the median earnings for U.S. women working full time, year-round were just 77 percent of U.S. men’s median earnings—a gap of 23 percent. Progress to close the gap has stalled during the last decade and the gap is even larger for women of color. This pay gap begins early in women’s careers. According to AAUW’s research report Graduating to a Pay Gap, women only one year out of college, working full time, were paid on average just 82 percent of what their male counterparts were paid. After controlling for hours worked, occupation, college major, employment sector, and other factors associated with pay, the gap shrinks but does not disappear. About one-third of the gap cannot be explained by these factors commonly understood to affect earnings. Fifty years after passage of the Equal Pay Act, it’s clear the pay gap is unlikely to go away on its own. That’s why the American Association of University Women and its more than 165,000 members and supporters are leading a nationwide campaign to close the pay gap and end pay discrimination. Go to FightForFairPay.org for more information. Median earnings for men in Kentucky were $42,321 compared to women’s median earnings of $32,157 — an earnings ratio of just 76 percent.
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