Discrimination in the Modern Workplace
The advancements of the century including the internet have brought about significant changes in our lives and created a global platform for connectivity. One critical issue that has been highlighted by these developments is discrimination. Discrimination refers to the act of treating individuals based on their perceived group affiliations than their individual abilities. It encompasses forms such as ethnic, religious gender based and socioeconomic biases.
Discrimination hampers progress in ways. Firstly it disrupts harmony with racism being an example. Hate crimes motivated by bias accounted for a portion of reported incidents. In Australia racial disparities persist across areas such as police violence, sentencing disparities, income inequality and gender based violence. These examples highlight how discrimination presents itself in interconnected ways.
Religious differences also contribute to tension and conflicts around the world. Disagreements between beliefs and atheism can lead to debates and occasionally even threats to life—particularly in countries where atheism is criminalised. The rise of organisations like Al Qaeda, Boko Haram and ISIS further emphasises the consequences of religious extremism. This can also add to the fear and incorrect bias people hold towards religious employees.
Gender based discrimination is another pressing issue that predominantly affects women—manifesting itself through acts, like rape and domestic abuse. It is alarming to see statistics that reveal the occurrence of abuse, rape and gender based income disparities. These injustices contribute to stress related illnesses such, as depression, anxiety and chronic diseases.
From a perspective discrimination hinders progress. When there is discrimination, against women it leads to a decrease in productivity. The global gender pay gap remains a concern with women, women of color earning less than their male counterparts. This inequality in opportunity also affects poverty by impeding development. Moreover discrimination has an impact on health as it can cause hormone imbalances, heightened stress levels and related illnesses. Regrettably even healthcare systems are not immune to discrimination which results in access to quality care. Victims of discrimination often suffer from self esteem and lack of confidence. It is important to provide access to information and processes for those affected by discrimination. Training and education is key.
To combat discrimination effectively requires efforts focused on re-education reintegration into society and implementing reforms within education systems. Societies must refrain from teaching beliefs. Actively work towards unlearning biases while dismantling discriminatory institutions. When examining the relationship, between discrimination and development through studies conducted on adolescents psychological well being and substance use experiences show that discriminatory encounters have lasting effects. Even primary caregivers who experienced socioeconomic discrimination during childhood can influence behaviours in adolescents.
Building bonds, between parents and children can help mitigate these effects underscoring the significance of nurturing relationships. The challenges in development are further compounded by gender discrimination. Biased laws, attitudes and practices create barriers that hinder women’s empowerment and contribute to disparities in education, employment opportunities and health outcomes. It is vital to tackle these systems to foster inclusive growth.
Despite advancements in women’s rights, gender inequality remains a pressing concern. The gender pay gap persists and violence against women continues even though it is being talked about more. Additionally discrimination against individuals with disabilities poses another issue as they often face poverty due to social obstacles and the cost of living.
While COVID 19 has exacerbated challenges for groups it has also raised awareness about discrimination and inequalities. Recognising the need for change world leaders are increasingly committed to achieving gender equality and minimising the impact of discrimination. Business owners now see the importance of improving the work environment and bringing this equality forward. Policymakers now perceive gender equality as an opportunity for growth. Investing in HR development and greater workforce participation, training and development programs and educating staff are a few of the steps. They acknowledge that discriminatory social systems impede progress emphasising the importance of addressing these matters within strategies.
To make strides in combating discrimination while promoting development it is crucial to cultivate relationships, between individuals while implementing policies that specifically target discriminatory social systems. By doing so, we can build an inclusive and equitable future for all.
To learn more about how to encourage inclusivity and diversity within the workplace contact our team. We can create a tailored training session to help your team recognise who discrimination can affect those in the workplace and what we can do to fix it.
David Alssema is a Body Language Expert and Motivational Speaker. As a performer in the personal development industry in Australia he has introduced and created new ways to inspire, motivate and develop individuals.
David Alssema started his training career with companies such as Telstra and Optus Communications, and then developed Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP) within workplace training as principal of Paramount Training & Development.
As an author/media consultant on body language and professional development David has influenced workplaces across Australia. He contributes to Media such as The West Australian, ABC Radio, Australian Magazines and other Australia Media Sources.