Leaders team up to discuss wage disparity in the Valley

A mixer, hosted by Youngstown Business and Professional Women and the YWCA, to discuss the issues facing women in the workplace is scheduled for 5 p.m. Thursday

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WYTV) – In recognition of National Equal Pay Day on April 4, The YWCA and the Youngstown Business and Professional Women are teaming up to inform members and start a conversation about local challenges with the issue.

The National Equal Pay Day changes every year based on how long into the new year it takes a woman to earn the same pay that men earned in the previous calendar year. Last year, the date was April 12, which is a small improvement.

On average, women earn 80 cents to every dollar that a white male makes in an equal position.

Dee McFarland, with Youngstown Business and Professional Women, said some of the biggest challenges for women is negotiating that initial job offer. She said women need to advocate for themselves when it comes to salary.

“Young ladies coming out of college tend to start at a lower level because they don’t have the knowledge or the confidence to negotiate on their behalf – to negotiate their salaries,” McFarland said.

McFarland said women are intimidated and don’t negotiate their salary because they are afraid of losing the job offer, but McFarland says that is not the case. The worst an employer can do is say no.

A mixer, hosted by Youngstown Business and Professional Women and the YWCA, to discuss the issues facing women in the workplace is scheduled for 5 p.m. Thursday at the B&O Station, 530 Mahoning Ave., Youngstown.