Why You Should Fill Out ArtTable’s Survey on Working in the Arts, Jessica L. Porter, δημοσίευση στο Hyperallergic [4/1/2022]
Would you work for less pay? You would probably say no to that, but for many women, especially women of color working in the art world and beyond, this is the reality they face at work today.
As the executive director of a nonprofit organization that works to serve women in the arts, I have seen first-hand how this plays out on a daily basis in a variety of contexts. Reflecting on my own history in the arts as an unpaid intern, then moving to low-paid positions without benefits in prominent, large institutions, later owning my own business, and finally running nonprofits and being responsible for others’ salaries and benefits, I’ve come to understand the challenges as both a worker and a decision maker. Last year, ArtTable, where I am currently the Lila Harnett executive director, engaged a consultant to review all of our current and future positions in relation to salary and benefits. This process inspired us to want to know more about these issues of pay and compensation, but the industry was lacking data, absent a study published in 2016. Seeking to remedy this problem, ArtTable launched its own study this past September. In addition to our data-gathering efforts, we also now require pay transparency on all job listings that we promote on our website (a practice that is now required by law in New York State). When you know your own starting salary, you know exactly where you stand in a pool of others just like you. This unveiling is the first step in eliminating pay inequities between different genders, races, sexualities, etc. But, while this is an earnest step on the road to equality, the law is attempting to solve the problem without fully understanding what the problem is.
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