That average falls dismally, however, when kids enter the work-life balance. American mothers who work full-time earn 30 cents less than working fathers, according to an analysis by the National Women’s Law Center released today.
“Stereotypes about mothers and fathers contribute to this disparity,” the researchers wrote. “Mothers are recommended for significantly lower starting salaries, perceived as less competent, and are less likely to be recommended for hire than non-mothers.”
Beyond the obvious financial blow to families -- poverty touches half of kids living with single mothers, for example -- the psychological impact of receiving less pay for equal work can be devastating. Expectant mothers, anticipating judgement amid an otherwise joyful time, sometimes hide their bellies for as long as possible -- or plunge into overdrive at work to combat the stereotype, often at the expense of their health.
Working moms make less than working dads in every state, according to the National Women's Law Center analysis. The maternal wage gap is smallest in Washington, D.C., where mothers typically make ten cents less than fathers, and highest Louisiana, where the difference is a whopping 42 cents.
In seven states, dads make more than $20,000 annually than moms: Alaska ($21,000), Utah ($21,000), Wyoming ($22,000), Massachusetts ($23,000), Louisiana ($23,000), Connecticut ($25,000) and New Jersey ($25,000).
Check out how female breadwinners fare in your state here: