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Black Women’s Equal Pay Day
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Black Women’s Equal Pay Day
To tackle this topic, we read stories of contemporary Black women that focus on agency, competence, and direct targeting. Misogynoir doesn’t ‘just happen to‘ Black women. This gap in wages and advancement is not inevitable or natural. White and non-Black POC reinforce systemic misogynoir through our decisions – fueled both by unconscious bias and consciously targeting Black women.
This discrimination starts in early education and continues through a career, with those of us in power exploiting the lack of opportunities and alternatives available to Black women and femmes. As non-Black people, we benefit from uncompensated labor of Black women – so we have an individual and community responsibility to reciprocate that care and labor.
When is it?
- 2021: August 3
- 2022: September 21 (notice that the gap is increasing.)
- Mae Among The Stars (Ages 3.5-8)
- Fancy Party Gowns (Ages 4-8)
- A Computer Called Katherine (Ages 4-8)
How do we internalize the assumption that a Black woman’s labor is worth less than that of a white man?
- What assumptions did people make about the girls and women in these stories? What messages did the protagonist receive from others about the value of her abilities and contributions? Do you think they’d send these same messages to a young white boy?
- What obligations did the girls and women in these stories have to take responsibility for, that white folks didn’t?
- Discuss the ways your family receives money. What are your sources of income?
- What is one time when a grownup expected us to do great work? What is one time when a grownup expected us to fail? How do we think that affected how good we felt and how hard we worked?
How can we transition our economy to distribute wealth to those working hardest?
- Brainstorm ideas for how to hold your sources of income (employer, family, clients, investment returns) accountable for distributing wealth equitably between people regardless of race or gender.
- Can you write a letter or proposal for how to evaluate wages fairly? Can you distribute a portion of your income to Black mothers targeted by systemic barriers to employment or a fair wage? Can you research the companies your family works for and purchases from to see how they invest and contribute to communities supported by Black women?
- Support Revolutionary Humans.
More resources to dig deeper:
- Kids & YA Stories on Barriers Blocking Equal Play for BIWOC
- Provocative Kids Books About The Fight For Workers’ Rights
- How to Subvert Racist Gatekeeping in Kidlit with Activist Author Zetta Elliott
- No White Saviors: Kids Books About Black Women in US History
- Change who gets book deals with your dollars: Buy Children’s Books by Black Women & Femmes
- Black Women’s Equal Pay Day