Table of contents:

How To Resist Discrimination At Work - Image
How To Resist Discrimination At Work - Image

Video: How To Resist Discrimination At Work - Image

Video: How To Resist Discrimination At Work - Image
Video: How to Prove Discrimination at Work 2023, March

I would like to believe that the equality of all people, regardless of their gender, age, nationality and beliefs, is an obvious truth. But real life, unfortunately, too often shows that this is not so. Discrimination and prejudice destroy self-esteem and hurt, and sometimes even damage professional development and well-being. For example, when applying for a job.

It was smooth on paper

It would seem that labor law stands for the protection of citizens and should not allow discrimination when applying for a job. The relevant norms are spelled out in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

The Russian Labor Code also presupposes equality of opportunity for all employees (Article 3 of the Labor Code of the Russian Federation). Moreover, on July 14, 2013, clause 6 of Art. 25 of the Law of the Russian Federation of April 19, 1991 No. 1032 "On employment of the population in the Russian Federation": now the employer does not officially have the right in the job description to indicate any restrictions or advantages of potential employees related to gender, race, skin color, age, etc. Otherwise, such employers will face administrative punishment.

Humiliating another humiliates me

Walt whitman

It sounds like the law is meant to protect our rights and employers must follow it. But in reality, the opposite is true. How often can you find such announcements: “A single woman is invited to work for a job as a housekeeper in a private house”, “We are looking for young girls of presentable appearance for administrative work” or even “Office work for people under 35 (Slavs)”. Any descriptions of this kind obviously infringe on the rights of those who do not meet the stated requirements.

When creating an advertisement, on electronic job portals, the columns "gender" and "age" are provided, and in some places "marital status" and "children". Discrimination reaches the level of automatic filtering of unwanted candidates. And even if a particularly motivated employee manages to get through to an interview for a position for which he does not fit by age or gender, the employer will always find a reason for refusal - and the real reason will be empty prejudices and stereotypes.

Not a woman's business

When we think of discrimination, the first thing that comes to mind is sexism. Women are still not equal in rights with men, no matter what the Constitution says.

Yes, the 1960s, so vividly portrayed in the TV series Mad Men, have passed: then a woman had no chance at all to overcome the stereotype of a meek housewife. And although all the doors are now open in words, all over the world large corporations, educational and administrative institutions still show signs of gender discrimination. If a woman is present at a meeting, she is thought to be most likely a secretary. If a woman speaks, she can be interrupted. If a woman comes to get a job, she can be refused without a twinge of conscience.

According to Samantha Nutt, a physician, bestselling author and organizer of humanitarian organizations War Child USA and War Child Canada, there are understandable, but no less outrageous reasons for such an attitude towards women. Dr. Nutt has amassed ample evidence that women in leadership positions who are successful cause men to fear and act more aggressively. The more actively the representative of the weaker sex manifests herself, the more dissatisfaction her behavior causes and the more obstacles she has to overcome on the way to the set goals.

how to counter discrimination
how to counter discrimination

One female HR manager, when talking about gender discrimination, mentioned a case where the CEO openly declared his unwillingness to see women on the board of directors, under the pretext that they were "emotional hysterics" following their hormones. Repeatedly in practice, there have been cases when managers did not even want to conduct interviews for women. And of course, a familiar scenario for everyone: the reason for choosing a man for any position is often the fact that he will never go on maternity leave.

At the same time, modern research in the field of business proves that a heterogeneous composition, including by gender, is beneficial for any company. It helps to avoid one-sided thinking and decision-making based on involuntary submission to the most common opinion. In addition, clients increasingly want to work with teams that involve women. One possible explanation for this phenomenon is that these teams are more likely to complete tasks on time and on budget. Why is it that not everyone still understands the importance of women for achieving overall success?

Figures per topic

According to the American Psychological Association (APA), people who are discriminated against based on age, race, gender, disability, and sexual identity report higher levels of stress.

69% of American adults believe they face discrimination in their daily lives. At the same time, the stress level among white office workers is 62%, among Hispanics - 77%, among blacks - 78%.

No place for old men?

Another common type of discrimination is based on age, and in any direction. Sometimes, when recruiting personnel, candidates under 30 simply have no chance of getting a desired vacancy, and they find themselves in a trap: without practice, there is no opportunity for professional growth, and without regalia and experience, access to practice is closed. Fortunately, interest in young professionals began to grow with the development of new technologies, to which generations Y and Z have an innate predisposition to master. A much more common situation is the infringement of the rights of older people.

In the real practice of HR managers, it is not uncommon for an employer to refuse to consider candidates over 45 years old for a position, and this requirement has no basis at all! It is quite obvious that the older a person becomes, the more his skills and abilities develop. The average age of a US president is 54, a judge in the Supreme Court is 53, and the average age of the conclave in charge of electing the Pope is 70. So why can't someone over 45 be able to handle the responsibilities of an account manager, engineer, or educator?

Nothing is given to the lonely

There is one more type of discrimination, which is most often left unattended, but unconsciously affects the attitude towards people of this category - discrimination based on marital status. Sociologist Bella De Paulo of the University of California, Santa Barbara has been studying the phenomenon of singlism, a bias against lonely people, for almost 20 years.

More about indirect signs of discrimination in the team

In her book Singled Out, she describes the different situations in which this stereotyping manifests itself. In particular, it is generally accepted that the life of single people outside of work is less valuable and rewarding than that of married people. Therefore, it is assumed that they will meekly replace family colleagues who need to leave early; they are sent on longer business trips; they are more likely to be denied an extra weekend.

Moreover, in the United States, married workers or people with children have objective privileges in terms of insurance, social security and even salary levels - on average, they earn 26% more than single workers. It would seem that a lonely employee can be safely exploited without fear of sick child care, for example. Yet singlism remains a prejudice that many do not even notice. Research by Bella De Paulo and her colleagues has shown that single people are unknowingly perceived as less mature, less successful, and more selfish.

We save ourselves and save others. Psychologist's recommendations

Sexism, ageism, and other forms of discrimination make it impossible for victims to make difficult decisions about their career on their own. Instead of allowing their new job to shape their character and range of skills, they are forced to experience powerlessness and inhuman treatment towards themselves. What to do in such a situation? Every person deserves to be treated fairly, but sometimes you have to fight for it. People around the world are researching this difficult topic, and these are the recommendations they give to victims of discrimination:

1. Step outside your comfort zone

Sasha Romanovich, Executive Director of Grant Thornton, is sure that we often avoid certain opportunities not because of objective discrimination, but because of the habit of meeting other people's expectations. Contribute to breaking stereotypes: Try activities that seem unsuitable for your status, gender or age, expand your own range of acceptability.

2. Be bold to respond to interesting offers

Even in the event that you do not fit the specified parameters or they go beyond the scope of your skills. Don't hide from unfair demands and difficult tasks. Overcoming your fears gives you the opportunity to learn new things. Sooner or later, you will find an employer who will appreciate your drive and self-confidence.

3. Think in advance about the line of conduct during the interview

“If you find it difficult to be single-minded and loud about your demands, try to imagine yourself standing up for someone else,” advise negotiators Hannah Riley Bowles and Emily Amanatulla.

4. Learn to take the position of the interlocutor

See the world and the current situation through the eyes of another person, and you can discover new ways to interact with the other person.

5. Attract people of the opposite sex to allies

This will make the team more diverse in composition (which, however, can be said about any other group of people), and it is diversity that is the engine of innovation. One surefire way to find an ally, especially among senior executives, is to seek advice.

6. Support each other

Often women, young professionals, mothers on maternity leave, older workers or, for example, people with a different skin color have to work harder to prove their worth in the workplace. Therefore, it can be difficult to break away from business in order to help someone who is also going through difficult times. If you have personally been able to overcome other people's pressure and have achieved success, help others to follow in your footsteps.

Popular by topic