Real Life

Ivanka Trump Gives Her Blessing To Scrap Gender Pay Gap Measure

Ivanka Trump has long been a proponent of wage equality and measures that protect women in the workplace.

But despite her claimed support of women's professional rights, the president's daughter has this week backed the scrapping of a measure that would have worked to close the gender pay gap in the United States.

Ivanka, who is a senior White House adviser, says she gave her blessing to the reversal of the Obama-era proposal that would have required businesses to disclose data on employees’ pay, gender, race and ethnicity.

The policy is similar to one that is set to come into effect in the UK next year, whereby companies with 250 employees or more must publish figures on the gender pay gap of their salaries and bonuses.

"Ultimately, while I believe the intention [of the measure] was good and agree that pay transparency is important, the proposed policy would not yield the intended results," Ivanka told the Wall Street Journal, of the decision to nix the measure before it came into play.

She said her father's administration would continue to work on policies "aimed at eliminating the gender wage gap", but did not specify what these were.

Despite her proclaimed support of cheaper childcare and wage equality, Ivanka has not pushed through any concrete policies since joining her father's White House administration

Neomi Rao, the head of the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, added that the gender pay gap rule would have been "enormously burdensome" on businesses.

“We don’t believe it would actually help us gather information about wage and employment discrimination,” she said.

Obama’s administration made the proposal in 2016, to collect wage and pay data from employers for scrutiny by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. It was hoped that the rule would put pressure on businesses to adopt equal pay, by making such details public. The gender pay gap in America stands at 20%, compared to 18.1% in Britain.

Ivanka has been a vocal advocate for equal pay, and tweeted about the issue during America's Equal Pay Day in April:

One of the things she's working on in the White House related to the gender pay gap is a tax reform package aimed at lowering the cost of childcare. Just this week, her father noted at a rally that the issue was one of Ivanka's "very big beliefs".

The fact that Ivanka has supported this latest reversal on publishing details relating to the gender pay gap will give fuel to her critics who believe she is achieving very little in the Oval Office.

It was hoped that when Ivanka first joined her father's administration, the socially liberal businesswoman would have a moderating effect on some of her father's more noxious policies.

But insiders say the 35-year-old has been trying to downplay the influence she holds, as she faces continued heat for the President's hard-line decisions.

Certainly, the heiress has yet to prove herself with concrete wins around any of her key policies to do with childcare and workplace quality.

A senior figure who helped to create the proposed Obama rule on the gender pay gap said it would have been useful in tackling discrimination.

"We’d learn about a pay-discrimination problem because someone saw a piece of paper left on a copy machine or someone was complaining about their salary to co-workers," Jenny Yang, chairwoman of the EEOC said when the rules were drafted. "Having pay data in summary form will also help us identify patterns that may warrant further investigation."

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