12 surprising women from history who paved the road to equal pay
Denver Post via Getty, Mark Wilson/Getty Images, Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for City of Hope
- The fight for women's pay equality has raged among activists, celebrities, and lawmakers for nearly half a century.
- Despite landmark American laws, women working in the US still face major obstacles, including a gender-based pay gap that costs them thousands of dollars every year.
The US passed the Equal Pay Act more than 50 years ago, but American women still face a substantial gender-based wage gap.Despite landmark legislation and radical demonstrations made to push for pay parity between the sexes, the Institute for Women's Policy Research estimates equality might still be out of reach until 2059.Advertisement
A woman working full-time in 2019 on average earns 80.7 cents for every dollar a man working full-time earns, which shrinks women's annual earnings, the median of which is $9,909 less than men's, according to data from the US Census Bureau.
Here are some women in politics, entertainment, and social justice who have contributed to the decades of pay parity's progress so far - many of whom you probably didn't learn about in school, and some who might surprise you:
Lawyer and activist Florynce "Flo" Kennedy
Presidential adviser Esther PetersonAdvertisement
Southern Bell employee Lorena Weeks
Activist Rev. Addie L. WyattAdvertisement
Democratic Rep. Rosa DeLauro of Connecticut
Walmart employee Betty DukesAdvertisement
Goodyear employee Lily Ledbetter
Women's Tennis Association president Stacey AllasterAdvertisement
New York City school safety agent Kangela Moore
MSNBC host Mika BrzezinskiAdvertisement
Music icon Beyoncé
Actress Christina HendricksAdvertisement
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