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Utah gets a C- on women’s wages and employment compared to other states

Jun 23, 2021, 5:21 PM

SALT LAKE CITY — A new report ranking women’s wages and employment compared to other states gave Utah a C-minus grade. 

But one local researcher says she’s encouraged by this ranking. 

“Utah has a C minus. Actually I’m kind of encouraged by that, I know that might not sound great to be encouraged by that, but we’ve made some progress,” said Utah Women and Leadership Project Director, Dr. Susan Madsen. 

The report is from the Institute for Women’s Policy Research. Their annual Status of Women in the States Employment and Earnings Index uses “a combination of states’ performance on four indicators: (1) women’s earnings, (2) the gender wage gap, (3) women’s labor force participation, and (4) women’s representation in managerial and professional occupations.”

Utah ranked 34th out of 51 states, for a grade of a C-.  

C- for Utah wages actually represents improvement

Dr. Madsen said Utah has gotten D’s and F’s in this report in years past. 

She says the report shows we’ve improved on things like women’s wages in Utah, the percentage of women in managerial positions, and women in the workforce.

“We have more women in the labor force than many states, so we’re 12th in the nation in terms of  the percentage of women in the labor force. What we do know, however is that we havr significantly more women working part time.”

But Madsen says it’s that wage gap where Utah still struggles.

“According to the report it’s 70.2 cents to the dollar of a full time white man versus a woman that’s working full time. So we’re 50th.”

All in all, Madsen says while this report is encouraging there is still more work to do. 

According to the report, the District of Columbia held on to the top overall ranking on the Index, maintaining its A grade. West Virginia, Mississippi, Alabama, and Wyoming rank at the bottom of the Index.

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