Leonardtown, MD –Fifty-five years following the passage of the Equal Pay Act of 1963, women and people of color continue to suffer from inequitable pay differentials. While the Civil Rights Act of 1964 further strengthened laws for gender equality, certain racial and gender groups continue to lag behind. The Commissioners of St. Mary’s County lent their support to pay equality by proclaiming April 10 Equal Pay Day in the county.

First originated by the national Committee on Pay Equity in 1996, Equal Pay Day is a public awareness event to illustrate the gap between men’s and women’s wages.

Statistics released by the U.S. Census Bureau indicate, year-round, full-time, working women in 2015 earned only 81 percent of the earnings of year-round, full-time, working men. According to the Bureau, over a working lifetime, this wage disparity impacts Social Security benefits and pensions.

“Fair pay strengthens the security of families today and eases future retirement costs, while enhancing the American economy,” said Commissioner President Randy Guy. “Fair pay equity can be implemented simply and without undue costs or hardship in both the public and private sectors.”

The commissioners Equal Pay Day proclamation urges citizens to recognize the full value of the skills of women and people of color as well as their significant contributions to the labor force.

Images courtesy ofSt. Mary’s County Public Information Office