So much is happening! NAWBO-CA has signed on to co-sponsor
the Gender Equity (Pink Tax) bill by Senator Jackson.
Studies have confirmed the existence of a “gender tax” or “pink tax”: a practice in which businesses charge more for products marketed to female consumers than they charge for products marketed to male consumers, even when the two products are essentially exactly the same. SB 873 seeks to repeal this gender tax by prohibiting gender-based price discrimination for consumer goods sold in California.
A December 2015 report by the New York City Department of Consumer Affairs, entitled “
From Cradle to Cane: The Cost of Being a Female Consumer
,” found that 42 percent of the time, women’s products cost more than similar products for men and on average cost 7 percent more, including:
▪ 7 percent more for toys and accessories;
▪ 4 percent more for children’s clothing;
▪ 8 percent more for adult clothing;
▪ 13 percent more for personal care products; and
▪ 8 percent more for senior/home health care products.
SB 873 is consistent with California’s longstanding commitment to equity for consumers. For 60 years, the Unruh Civil Rights Act has prohibited business establishments from discriminating against any individual on the basis of certain characteristics such as sex, race, and national origin. In 1995, California elaborated on the Unruh Act by enacting the “Gender Tax Repeal Act” by specifically prohibiting businesses from charging female consumers higher prices than male consumers for services of a like or similar kind, unless the price differentials could be justified on non-discriminatory grounds, such as the amount of time, difficulty, or cost involved.
The gender pay gap,
according to a study
The Center for the Advancement of Women at Mount Saint Mary's University
in Los Angeles and published in its 2019 Report on the Status of Women and Girls in California, women in this state make 89 cents for every dollar men earn, and among women of color the discrepancy is more glaring. For each dollar earned by white males, Latina women earn 43 cents, African-American women earn 60 cents, and Asian-American women earn 75 cents.
Data gathered by the Assembly Committee on Consumer Protection, Governmental Efficiency & Economic Development showed that gender discrimination in the pricing of both products and services resulted in each adult woman in California paying a gender tax of approximately $1,351 every year, or about $15 billion statewide. This, combined with the gender pay gap, creates discriminatory pricing that systematically deprives women of an equal opportunity to succeed.
The Gender Tax Repeal Act was an important step toward greater economic equity for female consumers in California. However, that act did not prevent businesses from charging discriminatory prices for goods. As a result, in too many instances, California female consumers continue to pay more than male consumers for the same products. SB 873 would address this shortcoming in the law, thereby fully repealing any form of pink tax.
Also, we’ve taken our Advocacy training “on the road” thanks to our Presenting Sponsor SoCal Gas. In April on Friday the 17th at
the Discovery Cube OC
we’ll have an Advocacy best practices luncheon and NAWBO-LA and NAWBO-OC speakers and elected officials will be in attendance. Please join us if you can!
Lastly and importantly, our Propel 2020 website (
) and registration are online. Be sure to come to the conference and see Women in Power (that means you!) and what we can accomplish together!
As always, my thanks to our tireless and brilliant board members for all you do. And thank you to each and every one of you in the #NAWBOcommunity for your energy, spirit and accomplishments!
- President, NAWBO-CA
- Past President, NAWBO-LA
- Founder & Creative Director, Lentini Design & Marketing, Inc.; DBE, WBE, SBE, SB, SLB, EBE, VSBE
- Governor-Appointed Board Member, California Workforce Development Board