The Biden administration has narrowed the White House’s gender pay gap and hired a majority of women as White House staff.
In a fact sheet released Thursday, part of the White House’s annual report to Congress on staff, the White House announced that 60 percent of new White House employees are women, and women hold 56 percent of senior staff positions. Among Biden hires, women still make slightly less on average than men in the White House, with men earning an average salary of $94,639 and women making $93,752 on average — that’s a one percent pay gap.
Biden has made more progress on this issue than other administrations. In the Trump administration, women earned 63-69 cents on the dollar, according to analyses by The 19th and conservative think tank the American Enterprise Institute. That amounted to a $33,300-per-year median salary gap. And women held only 40 percent of Trump’s top staff positions. In the Obama administration, the American Enterprise Institute found that women were paid 84–87 cents for each dollar paid to male staff. And by the end of Obama’s administration, the president had a 50-50 gender split among his top staff, The 19th reported.
To help address the pay gap, the Biden administration has created pay bands to ensure that “regardless of gender or race, those completing similar work are paid the same.” And, for the first time, the White House has hired a chief diversity and inclusion director. According to the administration, people from racially or ethnically diverse communities represent 44 percent of Biden appointees in the White House and hold 36 percent of senior staff positions.
Gender parity has been a priority for this White House. In March, the president signed an executive order establishing the White House Gender Policy Council to advance gender equity and equality in domestic and foreign policy development as well as in the federal government. As Vice President Kamala Harris told the Generation Equality Forum in Paris on Wednesday, “Democracy is strongest when everyone participates, and it is weaker when people are left out.” She added, “When women are heard… democracy is more complete.”