(KTXL) — On National Equal Pay Day, California’s First Partner Jennifer Siebel Newsom is bringing attention to the gender pay gap as she continues to spearhead efforts to close the disparity.
Siebel Newsom announced Tuesday that San Francisco, Oakland, Fresno, Long Beach, Los Angeles, and San Diego have signed on to the Equal Pay Pledge.
The pledge is part of an initiative that asks companies, organizations and government bodies to analyze how they hire, promote and pay people, and ensure that it is a more fair system free of bias.
During an exclusive one-on-one interview with FOX40 News, Siebel Newsom made clear the pay pledge announcement from those six cities is a vital step in a state where, as of 2022, on average, California women earned 88 cents for every dollar man a man earned.
“I have tremendous empathy especially for mothers and women of color because we know that pay gap is much larger for us,” Siebel Newsom said.
Siebel Newsom first launched the Equal Pay Pledge in 2019.
In addition to the six cities that just signed on, so too have 111 companies over the last four years, including some of California’s largest employers like AirBnB, Ebay, Apple, and Adobe.
In signing, they commit to annual pay analyses, a review of best equity practices, and a careful look at hiring and promotion procedures.
“I’m proud to share Adobe has achieved global pay parity for the 5th year in a row,” Adobe’s Chief People Officer Gloria Chen said.
“It’s good for business. It’s better for everyone,” Siebel Newsom said. “We know that there’s a win-win when we pay Californians equitably. In California, we’re losing 87 billion dollars per year to the pay gap.”
While Siebel Newsom did not offer specifics on how to ensure companies would keep their pledge, she pointed out that the state already has some of the strictest employment equity laws requiring employers to pay people equally for equal work.
Last year her husband, Gov. Gavin Newsom, signed a new pay transparency law into effect that requires companies with 15 or more employees to post pay scales in job listings.
The law also requires companies with 100 or more employees to include “the median and mean hourly rate for each combination of race, ethnicity, and sex within each job category” in pay data reports they’re already required to submit to the state.
“We have to close that pay gap one company and one government institution at a time,” Siebel Newsom said.
Siebel Newsom says efforts are always underway to urge more companies and governments to sign the pledge.