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Ivanka Trump

Ivanka Trump supports dad’s plan to ditch equal pay rules

With the first daughter – who claims to be a feminist – giving her blessing, the White House works to make gender pay discrimination harder to expose

Ivanka Trump, the self-titled purveyor of women’s rights in the workplace, a woman with the president’s ear and no mandate, has endorsed the Trump administration’s plan to roll back an initiative meant to eradicate the gender pay gap.

The policy, which was created by previous president Barack Obama back in January 2016, was intended to expose wage discrimination. From mid 2018, businesses with 100 or more employees would have been required to provide salary information alongside data on race and gender in their workplace. Donald Trump’s government confirmed it would stop this new rule. Ivanka has provided her support.

“Ultimately, while I believe the intention was good and agree that pay transparency is important, the proposed policy would not yield the intended results,” she said in an official statement. “We look forward to continuing to work with EEOC, OMB, Congress and all relevant stakeholders on robust policies aimed at eliminating the gender wage gap.” 

Ivanka has chaired events focused on women’s economic issues, and has in the past been a vocal supporter of equal pay – she also released a book this year named Women Who Work. This move exposes a real flaw in her already ludicrous assertion that she’s pro-woman – why allow businesses to keep how they pay workers a secret, when it could really help to challenge the gap? Her ‘pro-woman’ logic only champions the white, rich, blonde and Trumpy.

“We don’t believe it would actually help us gather information about wage and employment discrimination,” Neomi Rao, an administrator from the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, told the Wall Street Journal. Rao described the policy as “enormously burdensome”, detailing concerns for privacy and confidentiality, and that it would be – basically – annoying for employers to fill out the volume of paperwork. Huh.

Jenny Yang, who was a chairperson of the EEOC when the Obama-era rules were first drafted, defended the guidelines. She said in a conference: “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. 

“Having pay data in summary form will also help us identify patterns that may warrant further investigation,” she added at a June conference. 

Obama issued the original rules on the seventh anniversary of the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, passed in 2009 that gave employees 180 days to file lawsuits after discriminatory pay.

“Based on what we’ve seen so far, there’s nothing shocking about Ivanka, self-styled champion for women, turning her back on women when it suits her or her father,” Alexandra De Luca of Emily’s List, a Democrat group that campaigns for pro-choice women to get into public office, told the Guardian. “She’s as much to blame for the relentless anti-woman agenda pushed by this administration as anyone in the White House.” 

The National Women’s Law Centre described the change as “all-out attack on equal pay”.

The move by big bad dad Trump mirrors his own anti-women approach. He’s previously attributed wage gaps for people of colour and women to worse performances and career choice, as Slate reports. His administration has also repealed guidelines that made pay grades transparent, while avoiding any policy on sexual harassment cases in workplaces.

This policy roll back only works to keep big businesses safe from costly lawsuits for unfair wage discrimination, and, pretends to be shocked: Ivanka Trump is not the champion for women in workplaces she claims to be. Read back on her palatable, elitist form of faux-feminism that she parades on her Instagram here