Photo: Alex E. Poimos via Flickr
This post originally appeared at 24/7 Wall St. March is Women’s History Month, and March 8th is International Women’s Day. First observed in the U.S. on February 28, 1909, the day has come to symbolise women’s struggles for equal rights. While it’s been nearly a century since women across the country won the right to vote and the right to work alongside men, equal pay continues to remain a distant goal.
Since the Equal Pay Act of 1963, the salaries women earn compared to those of men has improved, albeit slowly. In 1963, women who worked full-time, year-round earned 58.9% of what men did in similar jobs with similar hours. Today, women make 77.4% of a man’s salary, according to the most recent figures from the U.S. Census Bureau.
Although pay inequality remains a problem across the country, the difference is not the same everywhere. In Los Angeles, the disparity is not nearly as bad, and women make nearly 90% of what men do. In Baton Rouge, the figure is closer to 63%. Based on an analysis of U.S. Census Bureau’s compensation data, 24/7 Wall St. calculated women’s compensation compared to that of men’s and identified the cities where the wage gap is the worst.
Unequal salary for women happens in rich and poor cities alike. In the Bridgeport, CT and San Jose, CA metropolitan areas, household median incomes are among the highest in the country. Despite this, women earn less than 74% of what men earn in these areas, putting both cities among the 15 worst out of the 100 largest metropolitan areas. In other metropolitan areas, including Chattanooga, TN and Augusta-Richmond County, GA, the median income is well-below the national average. Women who work there also earn far less than men.
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