BUSINESS + ECONOMY

Why is the gender pay gap not closing?

Feb 23, 2024, 6:00 PM | Updated: 6:04 pm

pay gap...

FILE: 3 out of 5 money lenders face negative consequences. (Stock image, Canva)

(Stock image, Canva)

SALT LAKE CITY — During the past two decades, the gender pay gap in the U.S. and Utah has stayed stubbornly stuck. A Utah financial planner said he’s surprised by that fact.

In 2022, women earned an average of 82% of what men earned. That statistic comes from a Pew Research Center analysis of median hourly earnings of both full- and part-time workers. These results are similar to where the pay gap stood in 2002. That year, women earned 80% as much as men, according to Pew Research Center.

“I’m also, frankly, a little surprised that here we are in 2024 and this hasn’t gotten a lot better. I’m really surprised that’s still going on,” said DMBA Certified Financial Planner Shane Stewart.

Right around the corner is Equal Pay Day on March 14. Equal Pay Day is intended to highlight how many days into the new year women must work to earn the same amount that men earned the previous year.

Utah ranks third from bottom

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, for full-time and salaried workers in 2020, women in Utah earned 73 cents for every dollar a man earned. Only Wyoming and Louisiana had larger pay gaps, according to US News.

Nationwide, the median earnings of women working full-time in 2021 were $49,532 while men’s were $60,775. That’s a difference of $11,243, according to the U.S. Census American Community Survey.

The median income for Utah women is $16,562 less than men. But pay in Salt Lake City is more equitable than statewide. Men earn 23% more than women — a median wage gap of $11,160 as reported by Axios in 2023.

Lodge complaint with state

KSL Legal Analyst Greg Skordas told KSL NewsRadio about the remedies through the courts available to women workers unfairly underpaid.

If you find out a co-worker is earning more than you are for the same duties, the same work experience and education, contact the state of Utah, Skordas advised.

If that pay gap between co-equals is based on gender or race, ” I would go to the Department of Labor (or) to Department of Workforce Services and file a complaint and have them do an investigation … No employer wants to be subject to an investigation by a state agency in terms of what their doing with respect to their wages and the way they’re treating their employees,” Skordas said.

He added that if you fear retribution from your current employer, file the complaint anonymously.

Over a career, how much money is lost to a pay gap?

The gender pay gap over the course of a career impacts an individual female worker’s retirement but also spouses and families.

How might a woman worker use the $10,000 she is now losing to the gender pay gap?

“If you’re a woman, and if an average rent in the state of Utah is right now about $1,800 a month, well, there’s half your rent [for the year],” Stewart said.

Related: March 14 is Equal Pay Day. What does that mean?


Dave & Dujanovic can be heard weekdays from 9 a.m. to noon. on KSL NewsRadio. Users can find the show on the KSL NewsRadio website and app, as well as Apple Podcasts and Google Play. 

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Send it to the KSL NewsRadio team here.

Business + Economy

The Delta Center ice prior to Ryan Smith, co-founder and chairman of Smith Entertainment Group, Ash...

Heather Peterson

NHL expected to bring new customers to downtown Salt Lake City businesses

With a new National Hockey League team coming to town, the downtown economy is expecting a boost in profits. 

1 hour ago

ftc building shown, a new rule would bar noncompete agreements for most...

CHRISTOPHER RUGABER, Associated Press

New federal rule would bar ‘noncompete’ agreements for most employees

FTC officials asserted that noncompete agreements harm workers by reducing their ability to switch jobs for higher pay.

13 hours ago

FILE: Mountain America Credit Union 660 South. 200 East, in Salt Lake City. A new report from USA T...

Don Brinkerhoff

Utah-based credit union named a top five large business employer

Mountain America Credit Union employees helped land the company among the top five large businesses in America.

14 hours ago

A wood sign with the Google Cloud logo on a sunny day. A person rides their bike behind it....

Associated Press

Google has fired more workers who protested its deal with Israel

An activist group says Google fired at more workers following protests of technology the company is supplying the Israeli government amid the Gaza war.

21 hours ago

Utah small business...

Adam Small

Several small Utah cities named best in country for starting businesses

Utah boasts several small cities that are ranked among some of the best in the country to start up a small business.

2 days ago

A car is filled at a gas pump in Sandy on Tuesday, March 19, 2024. Hurricane season could affect ga...

Britt Johnson

Hurricane season could mean bad news for Utah gas prices

Hurricane season is expected to be intense this year, and while none of them should hit Utah rising gas prices probably will. 

5 days ago

Sponsored Articles

a doctor putting her hand on the chest of her patient...

Intermountain Health

Intermountain nurse-midwives launch new gynecology access clinic

An access clinic launched by Intermountain nurse-midwives provides women with comprehensive gynecology care.

Young couple hugging while a realtor in a suit hands them keys in a new home...

Utah Association of Realtors

Buying a home this spring? Avoid these 5 costly pitfalls

By avoiding these pitfalls when buying a home this spring, you can ensure your investment will be long-lasting and secure.

a person dressed up as a nordic viking in a dragon boat resembling the bear lake monster...

Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

The Legend of the Bear Lake Monster

The Bear Lake monster has captivated people in the region for centuries, with tales that range from the believable to the bizarre.

...

Live Nation Concerts

All the artists coming to Utah First Credit Union Amphitheatre (formerly USANA Amp) this summer

Summer concerts are more than just entertainment; they’re a celebration of life, love, and connection.

Mother and cute toddler child in a little fancy wooden cottage, reading a book, drinking tea and en...

Visit Bear Lake

How to find the best winter lodging in Bear Lake, Utah

Winter lodging in Bear Lake can be more limited than in the summer, but with some careful planning you can easily book your next winter trip.

Happy family in winter clothing at the ski resort, winter time, watching at mountains in front of t...

Visit Bear Lake

Ski more for less: Affordable ski resorts near Bear Lake, Utah

Plan your perfect ski getaway in Bear Lake this winter, with pristine slopes, affordable tickets, and breathtaking scenery.

Why is the gender pay gap not closing?