October 25 2012
THE REAL STORY IN THE AAUW'S WAGE GAP STUDY
Women's Org Less Concerned with So-Called Wage Gap, More Concerned with Goosing Democratic Turnout
(Washington, D.C.) -- Following the release of a new report, Graduating with a Pay Gap, from the American Association of University Women (AAUW), Independent Women's Forum releases the following responses:
Sabrina Schaeffer, executive director of the Independent Women's Forum, issued the following statement:
“The AAUW's report on the so-called gender pay gap is laughable. With less than two weeks until Election Day, this women’s organization is less concerned with closing the so-called wage gap than goosing Democratic turnout.
"It’s widely accepted that choices – including college major and what kind of careers women choose to go into – not widespread discrimination overwhelmingly explain the differences in pay between the genders--which is exactly what this study shows, though you'd never know it from their press release.
"It’s sad that despite all the ways in which women are learning, working, and succeeding today, groups like the AAUW continue trying to convince young women that society and the workplace are inherently hostile.”
Carrie Lukas, managing director of the Independent Women's Forum, writes:
"The headline of the new AAUW study on the differences between men and women’s earnings after college could have been, “Study Confirms Men and Women’s Choices Drive Differences in Pay.” Alas, you have to read well into the report summary and most of the news stories to get to this key finding.
"Yes, a wage gap persists even among new grads. But when the choice or major, hours worked, and career choices are taken into account, the wage gap shrinks to 6.6 percent. That 6.6 percent is “unexplained.” Discrimination could play a role in that gap, but so could other factors. For example, as the AAUW discusses, differences in men and women’s willingness to negotiate their salaries could play a role.
"At a minimum, the AAUW and the politicians who use the “pernicious wage gap” to call for more government intervention into compensation practices should begin with the 6.6 percent “unexplained gap” statistic, instead of misleading the public by suggesting that an apples-to-apples comparison yields a 18 or 23 percent unexplained gap."
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Independent Women's Forum is a non-partisan, 501(c)(3) research and educational institution dedicated to expanding the conservative coalition, both by increasing the number of women who understand and value the benefits of limited government, personal liberty, and free markets, and by countering those who seek to ever expand government in the name of protecting women.