Partnership Characteristics and the Motherhood Wage Penalty: The Influence of Sexual Orientation
Pearl Kyei, University of Pennsylvania
The existence of a motherhood or family wage gap in the labor market has been well-documented but a population sub-group for whom researchers have not fully explored the wage effects of parenthood is the same-sex unmarried couple population. The purpose of this paper is to determine whether a motherhood wage penalty exists for same-sex unmarried partner (SSUP) parents using PUMS data from the U.S. census and the American Community Survey to compare four different partnership types: married, two-sex unmarried partners, female SSUP and male SSUP. The hypothesis is that a motherhood penalty would exist for SSUP parents of both sexes but would be significantly smaller than that for the general female population. Preliminary findings indicate that having a dependent child actually has a positive (negative) association with the wages of female (male) SSUP parents which is contrary to current knowledge on the effect of parenthood on earnings.
Presented in Session 48: Motherhood and Work