By Ellen McGirt
Updated: November 2, 2017 10:43 AM ET

Our sisters in inclusion at The Broadsheet (subscribe here) have brought in a special guest to mark a dismal but vital milestone: Latina Equal Pay Day 2017.

Today, we hand the mic to activist and actor Eva Longoria:

Thursday is the second day of November.

This means that we are more than 10 months into 2017. It also has an important, additional meaning for millions of Americans; it is Latina Equal Pay Day, the day when the amount the average Latina is paid catches up to what the average white man made the previous year. In other words: In order to earn what a white man earned in 2016, a Latina must work that entire year—plus 10 extra months in 2017.

On average, American women still make just 80 cents for every dollar their male coworkers make. When you break the pay gap down by race and ethnicity, the problem is magnified. To highlight this reality, women activate around a variety of Equal ay Days throughout the year: Asian-American Women’s Equal Pay Day in March, all women’s Equal Pay Day in April, African American Women’s Equal Pay Day in July, Native American Women’s Equal Pay Day in September.

Latina Equal Pay Day is dead last. Out of the major demographic groups in the U.S., we make the least per dollar compared to white men. For every dollar white men make, Latinas make 54 cents. That’s like ripping a dollar bill in half—or like working an entire week, but only getting paid through Wednesday afternoon. At this rate, to earn what white men earn by age 60, Latina women would have to work until they’re 90.

I come from a long, proud line of smart, hard-working Mexican-American women, and this injustice strikes deep. So I ask myself: How can we start to address the widespread and enduring gender wage gap problem?

Click here for her plan to address the gap. Here’s a taste. “CEOs, executives, influencers and entrepreneurs: I’m talking to you. Take an honest look at the gender compensation parity in your company, and if there’s a gap, fix it. Not only is it the right thing to do, it’s proven that it makes business sense.”


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