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Latina Equal Pay Day 2021 and How Latinas Can Prepare Financially

Today is Latina Equal Pay Day. One of the reasons I started Snowball with Pam was to create a platform that helps solve the wealth gap for women, especially Black and Latina women – the two groups where the disparity is the largest.

Latinx women must work a total of 22 months to earn what white men earn in just 12. Latinas are paid only 57 cents on average for every dollar paid to white non-Hispanic men. Over a 40-year career, this amounts to over one million dollars of lost income.

Financial stability is the root of overall stability. If you aren’t making enough to make ends meet and, if you are worried about paying bills, it’s hard to think about anything else. For many Latinas, their financial stability often has huge ripple effects for their family. Research has found that as Latino millennials continue to cope with the financial impacts of the pandemic ––nearly three-quarters (72%) are also providing financial support to their family — compared to the 53% of non-Hispanic millennials. Further, 41% of Hispanic mothers were their family’s breadwinner in 2017, the majority of whom are single mothers.

Last year, when I shared information on Latina Equal Pay Day, I got DM’s asking if this was real. It is. Amplifying the wage gap is important, as it helps to push businesses and governments to approve efforts such as The Paycheck Fairness Act–a comprehensive bill that seeks to close loopholes in the Equal Pay Act. Closing the pay and wealth gap will take a concerted effort from all angles – employers, individuals, policymakers and the financial services industry.

At Snowball Wealth, our core platform provides a free student loan plan that helps users save money on their student loans and make smarter decisions. During the pandemic, we also created a community for women to talk about money – salary negotiation tips, debt planning, and investing – really anything you’d want to ask about or feel unsure about. We believe in giving you the tools to tackle student debt, so you can start saving and investing to build wealth.

On Latina Equal Pay Day, we’d like to share some tips for Latinas to prepare financially:

On student loans:

  • When it comes to your student loans and debt in general – don’t make the mistake of paying the minimum and hoping it will go away. It’s best to take a proactive approach and see what your options are.
  • If you’re planning on attending college or a current student, ensure the degree you’re getting has the ROI (return on investment) needed to pay off your student loan debt.

On career:

  • Research shows that in order to apply for a job women feel they need to meet 100% of the criteria while men usually apply after meeting about 60%. I’m here to tell you to apply even when you don’t fulfill all requirements, switching jobs is said to be one of the best ways to increase your income.
  • Advocate for yourself at work. Keep track of your progress and what you’ve contributed to the team/organization and share this with your manager/boss. Your work will not speak for itself.

On personal finances:

  • Be proactive about your personal finances. Set a weekly day to review your finances and set goals. Treat it as a responsibility you have to yourself.
  • Find a community and safe space to ask questions and learn about habits and tactics for your finances. Join our slack community to ask questions and to get exposure to new ideas.
  • Focus on big wins! Most times we are so aware of our day-to-day budget (treating ourselves to coffee here and there), and neglect big money wins such as renting a room in our house or our car, adding an extra stream of income, upskilling, re-selling, etc.

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