Students from Jordan High School’s Young Democrats club are still hoping to speak with President Barack Obama about wage equality during his first visit to the state, even though they haven’t heard back from the president’s team yet.
“We have not had anybody reach out to us yet, I don’t anticipate that will happen. But, we just wanted to see if we could sit down with him for a couple of minutes,” said Kari Schott, the 17-year-old president of the Young Democrats.
Her club made headlines a few weeks ago after holding a Gender Equality bake sale at their school. Cookies were priced to reflect the national gender wage gap. Girls were asked to pay 77 cents per cookie, while boys were charged $1.
Schott said Utah is a good place to start the discussion around wage equality because the state has one of the worst gaps in the nation.
“In this state, in Utah, we are the fourth biggest wage gap in the nation, so that means for every dollar a man makes a woman only makes 70 cents, compared to 77 cents in some other states,” Schott said. “It’s definitely a big issue here in Utah, so if I could just sit down and talk with him about that, because it does hit close to home, I think that would help.”
Though Schott is still too young to vote, she said working toward closing the wage gap is important to her future.
“We are going into the workforce in a couple of years, so we just want to start a conversation and maybe not so far in the future things will start changing and closing that gap,” Schott said.
While her club is watching the president’s speech from school, Schott will be at Hill Air force Base listening to Obama’s remarks in person, and hoping he brings up wage equality.