The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has issued a trio of reports that find women are underrepresented in federal government leadership positions, while significant gender pay gaps persist in the federal sector.
On Nov. 8, the organization released the three reports, with each one focusing on a different group of women in the federal government: American Indian and Alaska Native (AIAN) women, African American women and Hispanic women and Latinas.
According to an EEOC statement, the reports examined data from fiscal year 2020 to compare the participation, retention, advancement and pay of each group of women to three different groups: the total federal workforce, all women and men of the same ethnicity or race. Overall, the results indicate that “employment outcomes for these three groups of women were not equal to the comparison groups,” the organization said, noting that better understanding the challenges these groups of women encounter in the government workplace can help agencies better address the inequalities seen in this research.
In the American Indian and Alaska Native Women in the Federal Sector report, for instance, EEOC found that AIAN women resigned at a rate of 3.6%, higher than the governmentwide average of 2.3%, and were involuntarily separated from federal agencies at a rate of 0.8%, higher than the governmentwide rate of 0.5%.
In terms of representation in leadership roles, the report found that AIAN women are proportionately represented among managers and supervisors, but account for just 0.4% of the executive ranks, disproportionate to their overall presence in the federal workforce. In addition, AIAN women earned a median annual salary of $56,432 in FY 2020, or roughly $26,200 less than all federal employees and $22,800 less than all women, according to EEOC.
African American Women in the Federal Sector sees African American women also resigning at a rate higher than the governmentwide average, if only slightly higher, at 2.5%. African American women, who make up 11.7% of the federal workforce, are also underrepresented in leadership positions, accounting for 10.4% of supervisors, 9.6% of managers and 7.3% of executives. African American earned, on average, $12,597 less than other federal employees and $9,206 less than all women.
The third report, Hispanic Women and Latinas in the Federal Sector, finds that Hispanic women and Latinas in the federal workforce are resigning at a rate almost twice the average of all employees governmentwide. These women are holding first-line supervisory positions in federal agencies at a higher rate (5.6%) than their participation in the federal workforce (4.3% of permanent employees), but are underrepresented at the manager and executive levels, at 3.5% and 1.9%, respectively.
With an average salary of $67,816, Hispanic and Latina women were paid less than Hispanic and Latino men ($76,802), women overall ($79,278), and employees governmentwide ($82,669), according to the EEOC, which is currently preparing similar reports, including one that will focus on Asian men and women in the federal sector.
“These reports reinforce the EEOC’s commitment to identifying employment issues facing underserved communities and supports the [Biden administration’s] goals as shared through Executive Order 14035, Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Accessibility in the Federal Workforce,” said Dexter Brooks, associate director of the EEOC’s Office of Federal Operations, in a statement.
“The barriers faced by different groups of women are sometimes hidden in larger data. We hope these reports provide federal agencies and those working to implement Executive Order 14035 with information that can be leveraged to address the significant pay gaps and separation issues identified in these reports.”
20 November 2023
HR News Article