By Laura Pereyra
NerdScholar analyzes the best and worst women’s jobs for fair pay in light of the Lily Ledbetter Act Anniversary
The anniversary of the Lily Ledbetter Act, legislation that changed the law to promote equal pay, was celebrated this week. However, Latinas still suffer the biggest pay gap in comparison to men. As early on as the first year out of college, women graduate to a pay gap, making 82 cents for every dollar the male peers make. For Latinas, matters are much worse.
Latinas earn $.60 cents to every dollar a man earns and the latest numbers show that their median weekly earnings ($518) continue to lag behind those of their white ($703), African American ($595), and Asian ($751) counterparts. So what are the jobs that are still holding Latinas from closing the pay gap? And what are the jobs with the best equal pay jobs?
NerdScholar analyzed the top 10 best and top 10 worst jobs for fair pay using the 2011 “Highlights of Women’s Pay” and the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Occupational Handbook.
We found that out of the 60 occupations that reported women’s pay as a percentage of men, women in the top 10 occupations for equal pay averaged 102% of men’s pay whereas women in the top ten worst occupations for equal pay averaged 65.8% of men’s pay.
Women can look to have the best equal pay opportunities in the following occupations:
It is worth noting that the best fair pay jobs are not the highest paying with an average salary of $43,293 for both men and women. On the other hand the jobs in terms of worst equal pay had an average salary of $71,976. If the same work is being done and it takes about the same higher education to perform these jobs, it makes one really think about how stereotypes might play into these jobs.
The best equal pay jobs have a higher average growth rate compared to the higher salaried and worst equal pay jobs and require less education.
The best occupations for equal pay have an average growth rate of 16% while the worst occupations for equal pay have a 14.5% growth rate. The difference is not too dramatic yet still very significant.
When Latinas are thinking about what type of education to attain they want it to be one that yields them the highest return on their investment and one that pays them the same as their male peers for doing the same job.
It’s tough to see these figures as good news for equal pay jobs for Latinas because as they get more educated and qualified for better paying jobs, the pay gap increases.
Here are the worst equal pay occupations women can go into:
All in all, Nerdscholar’s analysis shows that there is a long way to go to closing the pay gap for all women, including Latinas.
Perhaps it is the more competitive jobs that require more education that need to catch up with equal pay. To that end, Latinas will have to continue their efforts to speak out when they see unfair inequalities and speak out against them.
Laura Pereyra is a Communications Associate for NerdScholar, brought to you by NerdWallet, which provides free scholarship search, student loan calculator and college comparison tools. Follow NerdScholar on Twitter or Facebook.