Level Up Pay Equity campaigns exist to improve our region's economy, strengthen our region’s organizations, and build strength for our region’s families by closing the wage gap that perpetuates the issue of poverty that black women face in the Greater Pittsburgh area.
We are focusing more on equity than equality because equity is inclusive of intersectionality. Equity ensures that BIPOC women are always part of the conversation, whereas equality simply addresses “women” as a gender group.
Our focus points are:
The prohibition of employers from asking for and relying on salary history to set wages
The prevention of employers from retaliating against workers who discuss or disclose their wages.
Black women’s work should be respected
Workplace protections for Black Women
Encouraging Culturally Sensitive and Respective work environments for black women
Black women feel safe, respected, and valued
Changing the narrative around workplace harassment and inequities reported by Black Women in our region
Black women are centered to ensure they are not lost
Combating implicit bias
Safe space that empowers women to know their rights and advocate for themselves
Equity and equality are two concepts that are often discussed in the context of fairness and justice,
but they are not the same thing.
Equality means treating everyone the same way, regardless of their individual circumstances or needs. For example, if two people have different heights and you give them both a stool of the same height to reach a shelf, that would be equality. However, one person may still struggle to reach the shelf because their starting point was lower.
Equity, on the other hand, means giving people what they need to be successful, based on their individual circumstances and needs. For example, if you give the person who is shorter a slightly taller stool to reach the shelf, that would be equity. By providing the extra support, you are ensuring that everyone has an equal opportunity to access the shelf.
In terms of social and economic justice, equality means treating everyone the same way, regardless of their individual circumstances or needs, while equity means giving everyone what they need to have the same opportunities and outcomes.
So, the difference between equity and equality is that equity is about fairness, where people are given the support they need to achieve equal outcomes, while equality is about treating everyone the same way,
regardless of their individual circumstances or needs.
WHY THE FOCUS ON
The focus on Black women when discussing pay equity is because they experience a unique intersection of race and gender discrimination that puts them at a particular disadvantage in the workplace. On average, Black women are paid less than White men, White women, and men of color.
For example, in the United States, Black women earn just 63 cents for every dollar earned by White men, while White women earn 79 cents for every dollar earned by White men. Black women also face additional challenges such as being underrepresented in higher-paying jobs and industries, and being more likely to face discrimination and harassment in the workplace.
Additionally, Black women have historically been excluded from opportunities for economic advancement due to systemic racism and sexism, including discrimination in hiring, promotion, and access to education and training.
By focusing on pay equity for Black women, we can address the intersectional nature of discrimination and work towards creating a more equitable and just society for all.