When it comes to equal pay for women, we still have a long way to go — unfortunately, the wage gap is more than real. There are ways to fight back every day, and if you're able, it's important to do what you can to protest against this inequality — but if you need some more inspiration, these quotes about equal pay (from some of the most successful women in the world), will hammer it home. From Beyoncé and Tina Fey to Sheryl Sandberg and Ruth Bader Ginsburg, these fearless women have quite a bit to say on the matter of equal pay.
According to the Institute for Women's Policy Research, most full-time female employees were only making about 79 cents to every dollar earned by men in 2015 (and unfortunately, that number is even lower for women of color), creating a gender wage gap of 20 percent. As you'll learn from these quotes, even some of the biggest income-driving women of the entertainment industry have been paid significantly less than their co-stars on various film projects.
So what can we do? There's a lot. We can vote for politicians who will fight for equal wages. We can stand up to our own employers and ask for equal wages. We can voice our support for equal pay through various protests. We can keep the conversation going in both our smaller circles and larger networks. While there's still quite a bit of shaping up to do in regards to equal pay, I know I'm not giving up, and neither are the authors of these quotes.
1. "I want to be paid fairly for the work that I’m doing. That’s what every single woman around the world wants. We want to be paid on parity with a man in a similar position." — Felicity Jones
2. "We need to stop buying into the myth about gender equality. It isn't a reality yet. Today, women make up half of the U.S. workforce, but the average working woman earns only 77 percent of what the average working man makes. But unless women and men both say this is unacceptable, things will not change." — Beyoncé
3. "If you were to really look at it, the boys are still getting more money for a lot of garbage, while the ladies are hustling and doing amazing work for less." — Tina Fey
4. “In the past few months, I’ve become convinced of one thing: If I were a man, I’d be paid more. I realize that some people may not sympathize with an actress who gets to be in movies and on TV for a living. But if you take away names and vocations, the fact is that in 2015 a man is still getting paid more money to do the same job a woman does, in Hollywood and everywhere else. And no matter where you live or what you do, that’s bullshit.” — Judy Greer
5. "It's our time to have wage equality once and for all, and equal rights for women in the United States of America." — Patricia Arquette
6. “When I joined four teammates in filing a wage-discrimination complaint against U.S. Soccer late last month, it had nothing to do with how much I love to play for my country. It had everything to do with what’s right and what’s fair and with upholding a fundamental American concept: Equal pay for equal play.” — Carli Lloyd
7. "The reality is that if we do nothing, it will take 75 years, or for me to be nearly a hundred, before women can expect to be paid the same as men for the same work." — Emma Watson
8. "It's indisputable that there's a real pay gap. People can argue about how big, but that's almost besides the point. The point is that every woman, every girl, deserves to get paid what they're worth." — Sheryl Sandberg
9. "In sixth grade, we all had to write this opinion paper. Most wrote about things like why we should be able to chew gum in class — I wrote about why women should receive equal pay." — Gillian Jacobs
10. "In our view, the court does not comprehend, or is indifferent to, the insidious way in which women can be victims of pay discrimination." — Ruth Bader Ginsburg
11. "Imagine you're a little girl. You're growing up. You practice as hard as you can, with girls, with boys. You have a dream. You fight, you work, you sacrifice to get to this stage. You work as hard as anyone you know. And then you get to this stage, and you're told you're not the same as a boy. Almost as good, but not quite the same. Think how devastating and demoralizing that could be." —Venus Williams