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Emblem at the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission in Washington, DC on November 26,

WASHINGTON, D.C. (LifeSiteNews) The nation’s financial markets regulator has approved a plan by Nasdaq to implement that all companies trading on its exchange meet diversity quotas.

The Nasdaq Stock Market first submitted its proposed rule change to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) in December. It will affect roughly 3,000 companies.

Now approved, the proposal will require listed companies “to have at least one director who self identifies as a female” and “at least one director who self–identifies as Black or African American, Hispanic or Latinx, Asian, Native American or Alaska Native, Native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander, two or more races or ethnicities, or as LGBTQ+.”

Companies must turn over data on the racial, gender, and sexual identifications of board members. The new rule requires the companies to “provide statistical information in a proposed uniform format on the company’s board of directors related to a director’s self-identified gender, race, and self-identification as LGBTQ+.”

However, the policy, which is aimed at being “inclusive,” still leaves out other people who consider themselves marginalized.

The American Association of People with Disabilities (AAPD) asked Nasdaq to include people with disabilities in the rule. Boards may report that data, but it is not a requirement under the approved policy. The AAPD wrote that “ it is important to remember that disability inclusion matters to investors.” The group urged Nasdaq to consider how including people with disabilities would help them reach more customers and shape better policies.

A board with individuals with disabilities would be “better positioned to execute responsible governance, effective risk management, and optimal decision-making, as well as enhanced customer alignment, employee engagement, and transparency, as compared to those without,” the group said in its comments on the proposal.

“We are pleased that the SEC has approved Nasdaq’s proposal to enhance board diversity disclosures and encourage the creation of more diverse boards through a market-led solution,” Nasdaq said in a statement. “We look forward to working with our companies to implement this new listing rule and set a new standard for corporate governance.”

Republican Senator Pat Toomey, a member of the Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee, criticized the announcement.

Corporate board rooms, like all organizations, can benefit from a diversity of perspectives, but NASDAQ’s one-size-fits-all quota misses the mark,” Toomey told CNBC. “By defining diversity by race, gender, and sexual orientation, NASDAQ’s mandate will inevitably pressure companies to subordinate crucial factors such as knowledge, experience, and expertise when selecting board members.”

He said the SEC has become a “laboratory for progressive social engineering.”