It’s Latina Equal Pay Day

Photo credit: @SarahKhanArt

Photo credit: @SarahKhanArt

Guest blog post by Yai Vargas, Founder of The Latinista

324 days. That’s how long it takes for Latinas to catch up with the pay gap just to be considered “equal.” For comparison, a pregnancy lasts approximately 40 weeks, or 280 days. A woman can get pregnant, give birth, and celebrate for 6 weeks before a Latina is able to receive parity in the workplace. 

November 20th is the last Equal Pay Day that’s recognized in the entire year. Latina professionals have to wait until November 20th in 2019 to make what a non-Hispanic white man makes in just 2018 regardless of degree, experience or hours worked. That’s 54 cents on the dollar and just 47% of what they make. 

This is why Equal Pay Day is so important. It should not take anyone 324 days to catch up for parity. 

This is unacceptable, which is why I have made it my personal and professional responsibility to join forces with other Latina professional organizations to consistently develop and deliver workshops across the country to close this gap (

If you’ve ever wondered, “what can I do to close the gap?” Here is what I’ll share: my philosophy has always been to lead by example, which is why I teach upskill and uplevel workshops, through the company I founded, The Latinista. In these workshops, we train women to leverage their strengths and cultivate new skills. One of the biggest challenges professional women have to confront when climbing the corporate ladder is their professional networking capabilities and what I call the  “seal-the-deal” traits:

  • Understanding your unique value proposition
    Getting very clear on how we can differentiate ourselves is key to standing out and giving yourself the competitive edge you need to thrive and show why you’re the best candidate for the opportunities you’re looking to secure.

  • Articulating your area of expertise
    Your professional brand will open doors if you’re strategic and intentional about how you position your expertise. LinkedIn is a great platform for amplifying your voice and showcasing yourself as the thought leader who is an asset within your industry.

  • Doing your research
    You don’t know what you don’t know and knowledge is power, especially when it comes to salary. Be sure to research competitive salaries and take a negotiation workshop to get the highest dollar. Don’t be afraid to ask others.

While advocating for yourself is important, the wage gap isn’t going to close until corporations play their part and start sharing salary ranges, conduct regular pay audits, eliminate the use of salary history to set wages and prohibit retaliation against employees for discussing, disclosing, or inquiring about their wages, and we should all be encouraging our companies to step up.

In the meantime, Latinas will continue to thrive 🎉

  • By 2060, 27% of women in the US will be Latina.

  • Latina women who have joined a union make $235 more per week.

  • Latinas now represent 8.7% of the total U.S. population, which currently equals to 27.9 million

  • Latina median weekly earnings is $621, compared to the $835 white non-Hispanic women make

  • Latinas between the ages of 24-34 are rising in labor force participation by about a percentage point per year. This is pretty amazing. Rising labor force participation is critical for economic growth.

  • Latina female majority-owned firms grew in number by more than 682,000, or 87%

  • FAST Company: Women of color account for 89% (1,625) of the new businesses opened every DAY over the past year

About The Latinista:

A national network for Latinas and women of color invested in career and leadership development via hands-on workshops in NYC, Miami, Chicago and LA


Yai Vargas, Founder of The Latinista and Shannon McLay, Founder of The Financial Gym

Yai Vargas, Founder of The Latinista and Shannon McLay, Founder of The Financial Gym

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