CHICAGO (WBBM) — On the eve of national Equal Pay Day, an advocacy group for women says it’s time to close the pay gap between men and women.

Equal Pay Day is Wednesday. It means women have to work until April 12 of this year to make what men got paid in 2010.

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Here in Illinois, the picture is about the same as the national average: Women earn 77 cents, compared to a dollar earned by men.

“When you translate that into what it means for working families in Illinois, you’re looking at some staggering numbers,” said Portia Wu, vice president at the non-profit National Partnership for Women and Families.

“The total wage gap each year means that full-time working women are losing over $19 billion in wages every year.”

She says that translates into almost two years of grocery bills or several months of mortgage and utility payments.

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