Women report workplace bias in Wall Street Journal poll


Pedestrians on Wall Street in New York City.


Spencer Platt

A new Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll finds that about the same percentage of women believe they face gender discrimination in the workplace today as in a similar survey conducted 16 years ago.

According to the new poll, 84 percent of women say men are paid more for similar work, and 46 percent say they've experienced discrimination because they're women.

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Government data supports their perceptions on pay, the Wall Street Journal reported. The Bureau of Labor Statistics has found that fulltime female workers earn 79 percent of the weekly pay of fulltime male workers.

However, only two-thirds of men thought women earned less than them in similar positions.

"It's very powerful stuff about what is and is not changing in this country," Republican pollster Bill McInturff of Public Opinion Strategies, who conducted the survey with Democratic pollster Fred Yang of Hart Research Associates, told the Wall Street Journal.

One attitude shift the poll did uncover: A growing percentage of respondents think it is possible to “have it all” – a job and family – without making large sacrifices at work and home. In 1997, 78 percent thought work/life balance was impossible; today, just 66 percent think it is impossible.

The youngest women were most optimistic about their ability to balance a career and personal life, with 38 percent of women ages 18 to 34 disagreeing with the statement that it is not possible compared with 31 percent of women ages 35 to 54.

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