Kathryn Lindsay
June 15, 2016 10:45 am
Chip Somodevilla/ Getty Images

We’ve always known President Obama has our back when it comes to gender equality, but he just made that super clear at the White House’s inaugural United State of Women Summit held in Washington, D.C. on Tuesday night. The president, who is in the final year of his second term, stood in front of the crowd and talked about inequality in the workplace after proudly declaring that, while he’s getting gray, “this is what a feminist looks like.”

While Obama endorsed presidential candidate Hillary Clinton just last week, he acknowledged that her historic run comes after decades of hard work — and there’s still so much more to do. “We have to celebrate it, but we have to remember that progress is not inevitable,” he said. “It’s the result of slow, tireless, often frustrating and unheralded work.”

For instance, an area of life that hasn’t quite kept up with female progress? The workplace.

Those days when the average family was a dad who went to work every day and a mom who stayed at home and did all the unpaid labor — that’s not what our economy looks like anymore,” Obama explained, saying that America’s current policies still reflect that old-fashioned way of thinking.

Our workplace policies still look like they’re straight out of Mad Men,” he joked, but it’s true! Women are still fighting for equal voices in their fields, especially in male-dominated spaces like the world of business. That’s why it’s so important that Obama, the most powerful man in the country — if not the world — is calling for equal pay, paid family-sick leave, affordable child care, and an increased minimum wage, among other things. All of these things would benefit women and men as they work towards equality.

We couldn’t agree more, and can’t thank President Obama enough for his thoughtful and necessary words. Watch his full speech at the Summit below!

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