Study: Women Make Up Majority Of Low-Wage Workers In Pittsburgh

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — There’s a problem with paychecks for thousands of workers in Pittsburgh and across the country.

They’re too low, and women make up a majority of those low-income employees, according to a new study by the Metropolitan Policy Program at Brookings.

Women in Pittsburgh are over-represented in some of the fastest-growing fields, many of which are low-wage occupations.

In Pittsburgh, 37 percent of all workers earn low hourly wages.

“Home health care aides, personal care aides, fast food workers, food prep,” Women and Girls Foundation CEO Heather Arnet said. “We have moved from a manufacturing economy to a service economy. And unfortunately, those jobs are low-wage and low-benefit jobs and women are overrepresented in those jobs.”

The organization is working with local and national coalitions to increase wages and benefits.

“When we think about these low-wage workers, a lot of them are single moms,” Arnet said. “That’s why access to things like paid sick days and paid family leave are so important.”