When it comes to the gender pay gap, the average person may automatically connect it to adulthood. According to a recent study, the social form begins to appear during the childhood of an American child from doing household chores.
BusyKid, an app that helps children earn an allowance and spend, save, share, and invest their earnings, used the analytics from their database to investigate how much parents were paying their children. Based on their findings, boys are earning more than girls even before they enter the workforce. Data from the Pew Research center says that on average, women earn 82% of what men earn by the hour in the workplace. During childhood, boys earn twice as much as girls for doing chores by the week and also got larger pay bonuses. CEO of BusyKid Gregg Murset found the results to be shocking, assuring that most parents do not intend to assign chores by gender, but however the process, it is still being done.
“It was interesting and shocking to see how much of a difference in pay there was between boys and girls in our network,” said Murset. “As a father of both boys and girls I think this is an important wakeup call for parents to be cognizant of what they are paying to make sure they are being as fair as possible. I don’t think any parent would intentionally pay differently based on gender, but clearly, it’s happening.”
CNN Money reports that part of this gap may derive from occupational segregation, an intentional split of the nature of jobs based on gender. Certain chores being viewed by parents as being for the “girls” and for the “boys” are reportedly detrimental to the achievement of equal pay between siblings. At most, the demand for a job can lessen the earnings of a young girl, and the bonuses a young boy earns will heighten his earnings.
“There’s a difference when it comes to the types of chores that boys and girls typically do. Let’s say cleaning the bathroom versus mowing the lawn,” says Murset. “Harder jobs typically require a little bit more pay. If you’re going to mow a lawn for three hours, that’s a beast, a tough job. Maybe us as parents are giving our girls chores in the house that don’t take two or three hours outside, and there’s a difference in the pay scale.”
This same gap blueprint seems to follow past childhood chores into the retail and merchandise job world, where girls are likened to less physical positions that technically pay less and men are thrown into hard labor positions where a higher pay is required.