Yeah, Iceland Just Passed an Equal Pay Law...55 Years After the U.S.


According to headlines around the world, Iceland became the first country to legally enforce “equal work for equal pay” requirements when it ushered in the new year.

A glowing review in the BBC claims that on New Years Day, Iceland began requiring businesses with 25 or more employees to prove—with a certificate—that they pay everyone with the same job equally, regardless of gender.  Government bureaucrats will be responsible for enforcing equal pay by monitoring businesses and fining those that do not comply.

The World Economic Forum championed the move, claiming, “In Iceland it’s now illegal to pay men more than women,” making it the “first country to legalise equal pay.”

The move also won praise from feminist actress Patricia Arquette and Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.).

As Donald Trump Jr. mockingly pointed out, however, Iceland is not, in fact, the first country to make equal pay the law of the land. The Equal Pay Act of 1963 prevents pay discrimination based on gender in the United States:

As NPR points out, the concept of the law isn’t new or unique to Iceland. Iceland, however, is the first country to compel businesses to prove through a review that there isn’t alleged discrimination on the basis of gender.

While this Iceland law makes it illegal on paper to discriminate on the basis of gender, NPR notes that it is possible to pay men more than women if the reason for doing so is in writing and if the worker “adds extra value to the work.”

Thank you for supporting MRCTV! As a tax-deductible, charitable organization, we rely on the support of our readers to keep us running! Keep MRCTV going with your gift here!

MRCTV Reader,

The media are hard at work weaving a web of confusion, misinformation, and conspiracy surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic.

This is why MRCTV, a program of the MRC, exists—to broadcast conservative values, culture, politics, expose media bias, and provide entertainment to new and diverse audiences. But we can’t do it alone. We are part of the only organization purely dedicated to this critical

Donate today to help MRCTV continue to produce videos and commentary that are seen far and wide. $25 a month goes a long way.

And now, thanks to the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, you can make up to a $300 gift to the 501(c)(3) non-profit organization of your choice and use it as a tax deduction on your 2020 taxes, even if you take the standard deduction on your returns.

— The MRCTV Team



Sign up for MRCTV Daily newsletter to receive the latest videos and commentary.


MRC Merch