In case you missed it, we just marked the 57th anniversary of the Equal Pay Act of 1963. This begs the question: is gender-based wage discrimination still a persistent problem in the 21st century workplace?
Many men might say no. However, it’s a different story for most women. The Equal Pay Act was passed by Congress and signed by President John F. Kennedy (JFK) in the White House Oval Office surrounded by working women.
The Equal Pay Act “affirms our determination that when women enter the labor force, they will find equality in their pay envelope,” said JFK in signing the landmark law.
But if you think pay inequity is a relic, just take a look at the gaping disparity of salaries for men and women in the same or similar jobs inside and outside the C-suite.
Have you ever entered a conversation with the best of intentions, only to end up in an argument? I suspect we have all had this experience and I’d like to suggest that one reason this happens so often is because of mind distance. When we try to communicate with people whose experiences and world views are very different from our own, we often run into invisible walls. It’s like trying to describe colors to a friend who has been blind from birth. No matter how much we try to explain what the world looks, sounds, and feels like to us, if the other person’s experiences have been significantly different, they will have trouble listening and understanding. In my work as an interculturalist, I encounter such mind distance on a regular basis.
Social inequality is systematically destroying the livelihood of many inner city communities. The threat is not only from unemployment, poverty, lack of social services, homelessness and the effects of gangs, violence and drug addiction, but rather it is an underpinning of the very fabric of society.
“Inequality – in any form, against any person – is a threat to justice,” says Matt Hipps. Hipps, an assistant professor of political science and director of First-Year Experience at Dalton State, hopes to see public programs at the College geared toward getting people to discuss inequality in multiple forms.