More than 50 years have passed since the Equal Pay Act of 1963 declared that workers in equivalent roles should be paid the same wage, regardless of gender, yet recent statistics show that in 2014, US working women were earning just 78 percent of the US men’s median earnings. In Pennsylvania the gap is even larger — at 76 percent. In response, artist and entrepreneur Elana Schlenker has opened a ‘pay what you’re paid’ pop up shop in Pittsburgh called 76, which aims to draw attention to the gender gap by charging female customers 76 percent of the retail price, mirroring the inequality of earnings.100
Whether or not Less Than 100 succeeds as a retail enterprise, the store has certainly raised awareness and provoked discussion in a way that a page of statistics rarely does. Are there other commercial projects which could help draw attention to the inequalities that are so often ignored?