Donald Trump and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau Announce Plan to Advance Women in the Workplace

During a busy day filled with a joint news conference, discussions about international trade deals, and photo opportunities that launched a new wave of memes, Donald Trump and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeauofficially launched a cross-border initiative to expand the role of women in business and provide more opportunities for entrepreneurs and other leaders to advance in their fields.

A new task force, the United States Canada Council for Advancement of Women Entrepreneurs and Business Leaders, was announced on Monday afternoon following a round table discussion between the two leaders, Ivanka Trump, and a panel of high-level women executives.

"We must work to address the barriers faced by women and women entrepreneurs, including access to capital, access to markets, and, very importantly, access to networks," Trump said during the United States-Canada joint news conference. "We will focus on improving the ways our government and our governments together can benefit citizens of both the United States and Canada."

Trudeau echoed Trump's statements, adding, "This initiative is more than just about dollars and cents. This is about ensuring that women have access to the same opportunities as men and prioritizing the support and empowerment who are senior business leaders and entrepreneurs. In doing so, we'll grow the Canadian and American economies and help businesses prosper."

Although Ivanka Trump does not have an official role in the new administration, joined the meeting. Trump has repeatedly spoken about her interest in closing the gender pay gap and securing paid maternity leave. During the transition period, the "First Daughter" reportedly made calls to members of Congress about enacting childcare legislation (though in the months following these efforts, little headway has actually been made in the legislative body to accomplish her goals). Trump has also met with numerous business leaders to continue addressing her concerns about childcare and women in the workplace. According to a senior White House official, Prime Minister Trudeau was the one to reach out to Ivanka because of their shared interest in promoting female entrepreneurship, and Trump actively recruited participants to be part of Monday's round table discussion.

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Photo Credit: Getty Images