A study released Monday shows major gender-based wage gaps among employees in Wake County, in many cases larger gaps than those seen in Boston and Austin.
The Wake County Board of Commissioners received a report from a sixteen-member task force, a panel that resulted from a 2016 Wake County Commission for Women study on women’s employment issues.
“We ended up with some really disturbing figures for the wage gap for women in Wake County,” said former county commissioner Caroline Sullivan.
The new study compared wage equity in Wake County with the levels in Suffolk County, Massachusetts, and Travis County, Texas. “The gender gap is higher in Wake than in our peer counties of Travis and Suffolk,” the study says. “Wake County has the largest wage gap between men and women at all educational levels.”
In more specific terms, the contrast is even more striking. Men with less than a high school degree in Wake make an average of $21,513, while women at the same education level make $12,723, a gap of 40.86 percent. In Austin, that gap is 33.74 percent. In Boston, it’s 21.2 percent.
Wake male respondents with graduate or professional degrees make an average of $82,654, compared to $50,093 for women at the same level. The gap is 39.39 percent. Travis County’s gap for that group of employees is a little lower, at 38.67 percent, and Boston is much lower, at 21.43 percent.
Closer to home, Sullivan said, a survey showed that women who work for Wake County also experience a wage gap. Wake’s female employees make about $15,000 less than men at top levels, and about $3,000 less at the lower end.
This article appeared in print with the headline “In the Gap”