During the Tuesday meeting of the Middle Class Task Force, Vice President Joe Biden, Labor Secretary Hilda Solis and others discussed the need for equal pay for men and women as well as more workplace flexibility. The topic of workplace flexibility is coming up repeatedly with regards to teleworking. Teleworking not only provides benefits to the employees that can take advantage of the opportunity to work from home, but it is also a more environmentally friendly way to work.

The federal government is trying to lead by example in this realm and is pushing for more teleworking opportunities for federal employees. Unfortunately some House Republicans disagree with this plan and have killed a bill that would promote increased telecommuting by federal employees. The issue is yet to be resolved, but one dead bill doesn’t mean the end of the federal teleworking goal.

The other topic discussed in this meeting loosely ties in with green jobs — equal pay between men and women. Women earn an average of $0.77 for every $1 that a man earns for the same position. If you take this disparity in pay and add it to the fact that most green jobs are in male-dominated fields, you will find a population of women who are being left out of some of the most promising jobs of tomorrow.

Thankfully the topic of equal pay is not only important to the Obama administration but it is a topic for discussion around the world, as is evidenced by its inclusion in the initiatives that came out of this week’s Clean Energy Ministerial.

Photo: Center for American Progress Action Fund/Flickr