There is a big change in American opinion on the issue of pay parity between men and women. In the latest poll from Gallup, the results show that a solid majority now believe such parity exists.
Every year, in June, Gallup conducts a Minority Rights and Relations Survey, and according to this year’s survey 57% of Americans believe women in this country have equal job opportunities as men. In June 2006, it was 49% and in 2005 it was 53%. The first survey was taken in 1976 and this is the highest percentage that the survey has ever recorded.
When you get into the demographics, the survey comes up with some interesting facts. In this survey, 63% of the men in the survey say women have equal job opportunities. Last year is was 59%. When you take into consideration the margin of error, which is 3-4%, the results from the men are virtually the same.
On the women’s, there is an 11-point increase in positive evaluations, from 40% in 2006 to 51% today. This is a very different picture from the ones years ago when men did the hiring and thought is was just fine that women got paid a little less, because, after all, they did not have to support a family, and women were the ones screaming unfair.
They attribute this change in attitude to what they are calling A Hillary Effect. With Senator Clinton being the first woman in our history to have a viable chance to be President, and with a woman as the Speaker of the House of Representatives, women feel that they have the same chances as men in the workplace, the whole workplace.
This is how all the members of each party feel. These figures include independent voters who lean towards one party or the other. The percentage of all Democrats saying women have equal job rights grew from 34% to 51% over the past year, while among Republicans it declined slightly from 70% to 62%.
The Hillary Effect becomes evident when you take a look at the difference in how Democratic women and Republican women view the issue. Republican women and Republican men have become less confident about women’s job opportunities, while Democratic women and Democratic men have grown more confident. This increase is most pronounced with Democratic women, where a 20-percentage point increase is seen in the percentage saying women have equal job opportunities.
Results are based on telephone interviews with 2,388 adults nationwide, aged 18 and older, conducted June 4-24, 2007, including over samples of blacks and Hispanics that are weighted to reflect their proportions in the general population. For results based on the total sample of national adults, one can say with 95% confidence that the maximum margin of sampling error is ±5 percentage points.
Source: The Gallup Poll http://www.galluppoll.com/