IDAHO FALLS, Idaho (KIFI/KDIK) - Idaho is ranked the 49th state when it comes to women's equality throughout the nation. According to data gathered by WalletHub, the gem state only beats out Utah in its ranking.
WalletHub compared 50 states across 17 key indicators of gender equality. The organization looked disparities between men and women when it comes to income, education, workplace environment, and political representation.
Women’s Equality in Idaho
- 35th – Earnings Gap
- 23rd – Executive Positions Gap
- 47th – Work Hours Gap
- 49th – Educational Attainment Gap (among Advanced Degree Holders)
- 38th – Minimum-Wage Workers Gap
- 30th – Political Representation Gap
While these numbers look discouraging, WalletHub released another study last year that listed Idaho as the 41st in the nation for “political empowerment” for women. But last November, just two months after that study was released, female politicians won big time during the midterm elections.
Mayor Rebecca Casper is one of several women in the state holding a political. She’s currently serving her second term as the city of Idaho Falls mayor and says she hopes to see more women “step up and step out.”
“I’m proud to be one of many women… I’m also one voice that says we’re not quite there. We don’t have enough,” Casper said.
Casper credits her opportunity to the few women before her, like former Idaho Falls Mayor Linda Milam who was the first women to hold the position from 1993 to 2005.
“She’s the one that broke that glass ceiling or whatever want to call it,” Casper said. “Linda Milam and former Ammon Mayor, Dana Kirkham are still active members of the community.”
With August being the month for Women’s Equality Day and this year marking the centential passage of the 19th Amendment, guaranteeing and protecting women's constitutional right to vote. A right that Casper said needs to be encouraged now more than ever.
“The ballot box changes the course of history,” Casper said. “If there are little girls out there who want to know what they can achieve, celebrating this history is all about telling them they can do anything they want to do.”