There's going to be a lot more going on at Super Bowl 2017 than just a football game. Taking Budweiser's lead in not shying away from politics, Audi's Super Bowl commercial is an equal pay ad driven by the radical idea women and men should be paid equally for the same work. The car brand released the ad on Wednesday, and its power is undeniable.
The commercial features a father watching his daughter completely own a boxcar derby race and wondering what he is supposed to tell her in the future when she enters the workforce. While her father narrates, the young girl takes risky curves and uses her skills to outsmart the competition. If you get a little weepy watching her sportsmanship as her father wonders about how to make the future a better place for her, you aren't alone. Here's the father's thoughts in full:
"What do I tell my daughter? Do I tell her that her grandpa is worth more than her grandma? That her dad is worth more than her mom? Do I tell her that despite her education, her drive, her skills, her intelligence, she will automatically be valued as less than every man she ever meets? Or maybe, I will be able to tell her something different."
It's a beautiful commercial, but you may be asking yourself where does Audi stand when it comes to equal pay? The company's ad is not just attention-grabbing, it is reflective of the choices they have made to diversify their business in recent years. In 2016, they signed the White House Equal Pay Pledge promising employees will be paid equitably for the job they do no matter their gender, race, or ethnicity.
More than that, according to their website, Audi put together a women's Employee Resource Group to increase their knowledge and practices when it came to gender. The company has expanded maternity leave policies, established a program to help new mothers return to work, and set up designated lactation rooms. Beyond their commitment to striving for equity when it comes to pay in the car industry, they have pledged to help women enter STEM fields and creative fields. The Audi Fellowship program is designed to fund promising female directors through both years of the famed AFI Conservatory program.
The company may not be perfect (they are still working on some of their goals, according to their official site), but their commitment to making real changes to their business practices should be commended. Not only is their commercial a wake-up call to America about the importance of equal pay, it is also an honest look at their hopes for Audi's future. Bravo to the company for using the Super Bowl to share such an important message in a way sure to tug on the viewer's heartstrings and make them think about the progress the country still needs to make in terms of treating women and men equally in the workforce.