Cherie pointed out that women perform 66% of the world's work and produce 50% of the food, but they only earn 10% of the income
Earlier this week Cherie attended the International Council on Women's Business Leadership (ICWBL) in her capacity as Vice Chair alongside Secretary of State Hillary Clinton as Chair.
The ICWBL serves the US Government in an advisory capacity concerning major issues and problems in international business and economic policy, including the effective integration of business interests and women's economic empowerment into overall foreign policy; the role and limits of international economic institutions from a gender-specific perspective; and the Department of State's role in advancing and promoting the role of women in a competitive global economy.
Council membership consists of representatives who are leaders of American and foreign public and private sector organisations and institutions having an interest in the role of women in international business, economic policy development and global economic growth.
At the Inaugural Meeting Cherie pointed out that women perform 66% of the world's work and produce 50% of the food, but they only earn 10% of the income:
"That is not equitable," she said.
The council members reasoned that women are also wives and mothers, which often take precedence over being entrepreneurs. Cherie noted that when a child is sick or a woman is pregnant, they leave work to provide care.
Hillary Clinton also pointed out that although women already play a key part in strengthening the global economy, that role should be expanded further:
"If women participate fully even in our own country, our GDP would rise significantly"
Following the forum, Clinton pointed out the challenges and stereotypes women in business still face, reminding the council of its goals going forward:
"We all live with (stereotypes)...One of the challenges of the 21st century is to overcome them."