Shocker: Miami-Dade women get paid less than men.

Julia Tuttle helped transform Miami from a swampy wilderness to a bustling metropolis, but like much of the country, women here are lagging behind men both in government and in the economy, according to a study by the FIU Metropolitan Center, an urban think tank that provides policy solutions to organizations in South Florida.

The study found that women in Miami make on average 87 cents to the dollar to men, a gap that’s going to take at least three decades to fix. Silver lining: that’s better than the national average of 79 cents to the dollar.

When race is factored in, the disparities are worse. Black and Hispanic women make 63 cents to the dollar when compared to white women.

According to the study, the median salary of a woman with a graduate or professional degree was $49,400 in Miami-Dade. A man’s was $72,821. That’s a 47 percent earning disparity.

The pay gap is the worst in these three occupations:

  • legal (114 percent)
  • health diagnostics (40 percent)
  • architecture and engineering (34 percent)

And in county government, less than one third of board members are women.

But women are crushing it in education. Women have both higher high school graduation rates — 79.5 percent versus 73.6 percent — and higher college graduation rates — 62 percent versus 46 percent — than men in Miami-Dade.

Still, most small businesses in Miami-Dade are owned by men. That’s important because we’re a small business community.

There are some positive trends. From 2007 to 2012, the growth of female-owned companies outpaced those owned by men. Now the percentage of women-owned  firms in Miami-Dade is higher than the state and the country. Miami-Dade is at 40 percent, while Florida is at 38.5 percent and the United States at 35 percent.

And it seems like the county is working towards closing these gaps. Gender equality in government and the workplace means a more prosperous city for us all.

Read the whole study here and join the conversation on Facebook and Twitter with #MiamiWomenRising.

  • Gabriel

    There is no way to raise this question without coming off as a complete misogynistic pig, but here it goes: Is this study based on inequality of overall wages in different industries or on a wage inequality based on instances where men and women are performing the same job and women are receiving less compensation than their male counterparts?

    On page 16, for example, the study mentions that “The type of industry sectors in which women are employed may influence the overall earnings gap” Then it goes on to say that in the education industry there’s 100,000 more women yet there is still a 37.5% wage gap. They seem to be making a distinction between industries but not in jobs within those industries. There are a great many types of jobs that encompass the education industry and it may very well be the case that between men and women who hold the same jobs with the same educational pedigree and experience there is no income inequality. It may also be the case that men hold hold more administrative positions that are paid higher. Or maybe not, sorry if this question is answered in the study and I missed it.