the gender pay gap

Shopping While Female? There’s a Surcharge for That

Rocket science?
Rocket science? Photo: Bloomberg/Getty Images

New research confirms that yes, women are paying more than men — not including the extra we’re already shelling out for tampons and birth control. In New York stores and online, women are being charged more for items that both genders buy, according to a report from the New York Daily News.

Price-checking 800 products with male and female versions from two dozen stores — including razors, deodorant, and jeans — the Department of Consumer Affairs found that the female versions were more expensive 42 percent of the time, with an average 7 percent price bump for the women’s products. Even at Target, a sparkling pink scooter cost twice as much as the same scooter in red for boys ($49.99 versus $24.99). Confirming what many women consider a fact of life, city officials estimated that in one woman’s lifetime, she’ll pay thousands of dollars more for the same items a man would be buying. We welcome this team of research scientists to the gender pay gap.

Why are the stores getting away with this? There is no law against pricing similar men’s and women’s products differently. Retailers also (rudely) assume women are willing to pay more for their clothes, even though in most cases there is little difference in production costs, the researchers said.

“Gender discrimination is never acceptable,” said Mayor de Blasio, “and when we know that women continue to make less than men every year, the findings of this study are insult to injury for female consumers.” De Blasio said the city would push retailers to address their pricing gaps. Yup, that’s a good idea.

Shopping While Female? There’s a Surcharge