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August 22, 2018: Equal Pay for Equal Work

I wish right now that I had a Rosie the Riveter shirt – if I did I would wear it tomorrow when I go in and turn in my paperwork; that is the paperwork that goes hand in hand with my working at the Alaska State Fair.

I agreed at the near last minute to work at the Fair, this because I previously had so much going on, and in having so much going on, could not foresee what I’d do when I had less going on. The competitive trail ride, the Steinar clinic, the ten days following, of having visitors here, had left me with no time to think about the immediate future.

Then, yesterday, when I heard that those orchestrating the recycling effort had to let the new hire, a 16 year old go, I decided to play hero and sign on. Tomorrow should be my first day of work. Like last year, Larry is going to do the morning supervisory shift and I am going to do the afternoon/evening shift, that is if I am able to convince my would-be supervisor to pay me what she’s paying Larry.

Pete told me that his getting paid $10.50 an hour and my being paid $10.00 an hour is wrong, and that I should contest this. Today, in initially talking to her, I took on the persona of a nice person, one who wants to do right and please others – an actual visceral feeling (as has happened in the past) accompanied my desire to please.

Eva and dog in truck

So tomorrow I’m going to have a come to Cheesus talk and tell her that there should be equal pay for equal work, and if she can’t honor this supposed truism, that I will forego taking on the job. I have nothing to lose – this isn’t a career move, just a temporary job that is service oriented.

My speaking up for myself will also be good practice. I am now up there in age (how this came about astounds me), but there may be instances in which I am again in the same boat. And this will also be an example for youngers. I’ll be sure once this issue is resolved to tell youngers like Eva what I did and why.

Writing is often used to both problem solve and also to verify. I have, in writing this, verified that this is something that I do need to do. Some may consider it underhanded, my seemingly waiting until the last possible minute to do this, the last minute being the opening day of the Fair. But for me, this was circumstantial.

I will, tomorrow, remind myself that I’m following in the footsteps of many courageous women, women like me who were beset by doubt but then had the courage to step up to the plate and insist on equal pay. They did this knowing that they’d be opening doors for other workers. I need to do the same.

Next: 234. 8/23/18: What it is and What it isn’t

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