Although the constitutional right to abortion has been eliminated, many states passed highly restrictive laws on abortion earlier this year.
Now, a new research Shows that restrictive abortion laws aren’t just affecting health care – people’s incomes are also taking a hit, leading to a large gender pay gap.
Itay Ravid of Villanova University and Jonathan Zandberg of the University of Pennsylvania found restrictions on abortion providers, or “Trap” methodhas significantly widened the gender pay gap between women aged 20 to 45 and the rest of the population over the past 40 years.
The study looked at 4 million data points from the U.S. Census Bureau population survey to determine the impact of more than 1,300 TRAP laws that went into effect in 25 states between 1974 and 2016.
They evaluated the data using four different models, each of which found that women’s wages could be cut by as much as 6.5% for each new restrictive abortion law passed, with some models suggesting that income reductions were more likely Big.
“The findings are clear: across multiple norms and multiple robustness tests, the TRAP method resulted in a 6.5%-4.9% reduction in average monthly earnings for women of reproductive age compared with the rest of the population,” the researchers wrote.
TRAP laws are designed to shut down reproductive health care providers with costly and often medically unnecessary requirements on clinics, such as mandatory hallway widths, the inclusion of complex HVAC systems, and even specifications on how to outfit janitors’ closets.
Although the Supreme Court has struck down several TRAP laws in recent years, including Texas House Bill 2 in 2015 Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt According to the decision of reproductive rights organization Guttmacher Institute561 new anti-abortion laws have been introduced in 47 states over a six-month period by 2021.
The new study also looked at why anti-abortion legislation led to lower incomes, finding that women were often “pushed out of the workforce” or “chosen low-paying careers” in order to be able to care for their own children when abortion was restricted.
The study found that TRAP led to an 11.3 percent increase in the odds of leaving a job for women aged 20 to 45.
“These findings expose the fragility of progress in gender equality,” the researchers wrote. “The findings remind us of how gender inequality is closely related to freedom and opportunity, and how state decisions can meaningfully affect women’s economic opportunities. “
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