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White House's United State of Women: $50M toward gender-equality initiatives

By Doug G. Ware
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White House's United State of Women: $50M toward gender-equality initiatives
President Barack Obama hugs 11-year-old Mikailia Ulmer who introduced him at the first-ever United State of Women Summit at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center in Washington, DC on June 14, 2016. Attendees also included the First Lady Michelle Obama and TV personality Oprah Winfrey. Pool Photo by Jim Lo Scalzo/UPI | License Photo

WASHINGTON, June 13 (UPI) -- The first United State of Women summit will be held Tuesday in Washington, D.C., where companies are expected to announce some $50 million in backing toward gender equality initiatives.

The summit will feature several top speakers who will campaign for the advancement of gender equality on several issues -- including economics, education, business and violence against women.

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Among the speakers will be President Barack Obama, first lady Michelle Obama, White House Senior Adviser Valerie Jarrett and Vice President Joe Biden. The summit will also be attended by dozens of prominent social and business leaders.

"There's a lot that's been done by and for women and girls, but there's still plenty to do," organizers state on the summit's website. "Convened by the White House, this Summit will rally all of us together to celebrate what we've achieved, and how we're going to take action moving forward. Covering key gender equality issues, we'll make a powerful difference in our collective future."

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The historic gathering will also feature "solution seminars" throughout the day focusing on issues of equality -- and include announcements of substantial monetary commitments to the initiative.

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"The Obama administration, private-sector companies, foundations and organizations are announcing $50 million in commitments, along with new policies, tools and partnerships that will continue to expand opportunity for women and girls," the White House stated Monday. "These announcements include a pledge by more than two dozen leading companies to take actions to continue to close the gender pay gap, new resources to empower community college students to negotiate their first salaries, new campaigns to change how our country values care-giving and improve portrayals of women in media, and enhanced global efforts to promote gender quality worldwide."

"The primary goal of the Summit is to build a roadmap for future policymakers, stakeholders and advocates to continue to expand opportunities for women and girls," it added.

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A number of companies and organizations have pledged aid and support for the United State of Women campaign -- including Goldman Sachs, Civic Nation, The Aspen Institute, the Ford Foundation, PepsiCo and the Tory Burch Foundation.

Video: United State of Women/YouTube

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