USCIB Senior Advisor Ronnie Goldberg, who serves as the North American regional vice president of the International Organization of Employers (IOE), took part in a March 12 panel discussion of equal pay at the 58th Session of the UN Commission on the Status of Women in New York.
The panel, organized by the International Labor Organization and the government of Finland, facilitated the sharing of experiences and challenges, across countries and regions, of promoting equal pay for women and men, and informed the discussions during the session of the Commission on the Status of Women.
Articulating the global voice of employers, Goldberg stated: “Employers support, not just the human rights case, but the compelling business and economic case for unleashing women’s skills and talents and empowering them to enjoy equal access to job opportunities and career development.”
In her remarks, Goldberg presented a menu of recommendations to enhance efforts by companies and governments to support and promote women’s advancement and gender equality in the workplace.
The toolkit of best practices presented for companies included measures and policies around the following themes:
- Top management leadership and commitment to gender equality
- Making gender core to the business strategy, which requires measurement and accountability
- Providing an enabling framework through human resource and operational policies, including opportunities for flexible schedules and part-time work.
- Providing a robust and relevant support system for women executives through education and training
- Changing mind-sets and corporate culture
- Addressing the broader social context.
At the same time, Goldberg underlined that businesses looked to governments to adopt the following general approaches:
- Recognize gender equality as a key lever in economic development and competitiveness
- Champion for women’s economic empowerment with government officials at the highest level
- Act as positive role models, promoting ambitious gender diversity targets for their own administrations as well as the state enterprises under their control
- Engage in dialogue with business.
Goldberg called for governments and the business community to work together to come up with data- and fact-based strategies with realistic goals, and urged the OECD, ILO, other international organizations and the international financial institutions to continue to work together to come up with data- and fact-based strategies with realistic goals. She further urged these bodies to continue to work collaboratively to raise awareness of the economic dividend of gender equality.