Last week, Arjuna Capital announced that it had withdrawn a racial and gender pay equity reporting resolution at BNY Mellon – following the bank’s agreement to disclose its unadjusted median pay gaps (i.e., pay gaps aren’t adjusted based on role or position, which is thought to show whether underrepresented groups have equal opportunities to access higher paying roles).
I’ve blogged about other companies taking this course of action in response to Arjuna’s proposals. More recently, in addition to BNY Mellon, Adobe agreed in December to start providing unadjusted gender pay gap disclosure immediately and racial pay gap data by the end of this year – the first tech company to do so. Arjuna submitted 13 proposals on this topic last year and shows no signs of letting up. Here’s more detail from the press release:
Since 2016, Arjuna has compelled gender pay gap disclosures at 22 companies, and race pay gap disclosures at 17 companies, including leading U.S. tech, finance, and retail firms Apple, Amazon, Intel, Microsoft, Google, Facebook, JPMorgan, Bank of America, Nike, and Adobe.
Pay inequity persists across race and gender. Black workers’ hourly median earnings, adjusted for inflation, have fallen 3.6 percent since 2000, representing 75.6 percent of white workers’ wages. The median income for women working full-time in the United States is 80 percent that of men.
Citigroup estimates that closing U.S. minority and gender wage gaps 20 years ago could have generated 12 trillion dollars in additional national income and contributed 0.15 percent to United States GDP per year. PwC estimates closing the gender pay gap could boost Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development countries’ economies by $2 trillion annually.
Arjuna also isn’t the only investor interested in this information. For a recap of what comp committees should be doing to prepare for these types of proposals & disclosures, check out the transcript from our recent webcast with Mintz’s Anne Bruno, BlackRock’s Tanya Levy-Odom, Equity Methods’ Josh Schaeffer, and Pax World Funds’ Heather Smith.
-Liz Dunshee, CompensationStandards.com February 9, 2021