Press Release

No Good Reason the SEC Has Failed to Fulfill its Executive Pay Mandates

(Washington, DC) – On a conference call today, Congressman Keith Ellison (MN-5), Heather Slavkin Corzo, AFL-CIO Director of Office of Investment and Sarah Anderson, Institute for Policy Studies Global Economy Project Director, discussed the reasons why it’s so important for the SEC to implement the CEO-to-worker pay ratio rule as required by Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2010.

Rep. Ellison has been a champion for moving this rule forward, leading three letters urging the SEC to move forward on this rule.

“The whole of Dodd-Frank has been resisted by the industry. It’s absurd for anyone to argue that they don’t know how much they pay their workers,” said Rep. Ellison. “We want to know who’s really bringing value to the company. We are committed to this and we’re not going to stop. We’re going to keep pressure on the businesses. It’s the law.”

It has been five years since the proposal was passed and the SEC has still not finalized the rule. The AFL-CIO has submitted a FOIA request for records pertaining to scheduling of final action on this rule. Nineteen organizations who represent investors and the public also submitted a letter in support of this request.

“Chair White committed to make implementation of the CEO-to-worker pay disclosure rule a priority when she was nominated, but more than two years after she was sworn in as chair of the SEC, the rule has not gone into effect,” said Heather Slavkin Corzo, AFL-CIO Director of Office of Investment. “This is easy. It’s straightforward. We need the SEC to enforce the law.”

One of the most ridiculous arguments made against implementing the rule is that corporations facing public “pressure to maintain a low pay ratio” might stop expanding operations to low-wage regions, which would harm poorer states and cities.

“Let’s be clear here. The current harm to low-wage states and cities is coming from corporations that refuse to pay decent wages and benefits and force their exploited workers to rely on taxpayer-funded social programs,” said Sarah Anderson, Institute for Policy Studies Global Economy Project Director. “It is ludicrous to think that CEO-worker pay disclosure would do anything but encourage better wages in order to narrow the gap.”

Public support for this rule is strong. In petitions delivered yesterday to the SEC, more than 165,000 Americans demanded that the commission finally take action.

A digitized replay of the call is available from today at 12:00 pm to 7/16/15 at 12:00 pm EST.

Telephone:   (USA) 800-475-6701     (International) 320-365-3844        Access Code: 364300

Contact: Carolyn Bobb (202) 637-5018