Data compiled by the Louisiana Workforce Commission shows, in Louisiana, women make only an average of 65 percent per dollar that their male counterparts earn.

Ava Dejoie, executive director of the Louisiana Workforce Commission said Louisiana ranks last in the nation when it comes to the disparity between wages for women and their male counterparts. That's dead last!

Dejoie spoke to KPEL's Rob Kirkpatrick and Bernadette Lee this morning to discuss what changes may be made regarding the equal pay issue.

Dejoie said equal pay for women is a major piece of  Gov. John Bel Edwards' legislative package for the current regular legislative session.

Senate Bill 254 aims to shrink the pay gap among men and women n Louisiana. Edwards says the bill represents family values--a prominent part of his platform when running for governor.

Two weeks ago, SB 254 was introduced in the Louisiana Senate and has since been sent to the Committee on Labor and Industrial Relations.

The LWC data shows women in St. Landry Parish earn only 56% of what their male counterparts make. In St. Martin and Vermilion Parishes, women earn only 58% of men's wages.

The governor said for minority women the pay gap grows even larger. African American women earn only 48 cents and Hispanic women earn just  53 cents for each dollar earned by men.

If you are searching for a job Dejoie said the Louisiana Workforce Commission's Web site is an excellent tool to find available openings or to find job fairs in your area.

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