You Need To Know About The Difference Between Equity And Equality

You may often hear the terms equality and equity used synonymously. They’re often used to describe proposed solutions to sexism, racism, ableism and other biases that are highly relevant in our society. Equity vs. equality has been discussed a lot lately, but what is the difference between them and why does it matter?


What is Equality?

Equality, as the name may hint, is providing everyone equal opportunity. This has been used correctly while talking about equal pay among genders and races. The Equal Employment Opportunity Act is another example of this, which is a way to protect job applicants from being discriminated against. Equality is the end goal, but sometimes exact and equal treatment can not lead to the same end result, which is why equity comes into play.

What is Equity?

Equity is a step to getting to equality, but with taking extra steps to make sure all parties have what they need to get to the same destination. Equity takes into play the systematic and historical issues that may affect a group. In the popular fence photo, both equality and equity are shown.

equality equity

Why is this important?

When looking at the bigger picture, comparing equity vs. equality is important. While equality gives each person one box, which is equal, it does not allow them all to see over the fence. Equity gives them the number of boxes they need to have an equal result. Simply, equity gives different solutions to get everyone to the same result. Equity recognizes that one size does not fit all. When this is implied to important systematic solutions, equity takes into account historical and current facets that put one group behind another and makes up for it. If we want to get to equality, we need to use equity when necessary to get there.


We’d love to hear your experience with equality and equity, comment below and start the conversation!

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