Wednesday, 20 February 2013

When Women Are the Minority It’s OK – But Men It Isn’t?

Yesterday, the Toronto District School Board (TDSB) announced it wanted more men, to keep in line with its equal opportunity hiring practices.
For years, women, visible minorities and the disabled have had a leg up on jobs, simply because of these politically correct hiring practices to “balance” out the minority in the workforce.

But apparently, that balance has shifted slightly, as the TDSB admits it has too many women, and not enough men educating our young people.

The TDSB did qualify that, by saying they are looking for men, which are racially diverse, aboriginal or disabled.

Sorry if you’re a white able-bodied man – you’re still not wanted.

Women’s groups were up in arms that after the largest school board in Canada’s announcement that they would give a job to a man, instead of a qualified woman.

The irony in all of this, is it goes how wrong being politically corrupt – whoops I mean politically correct – really is.

Whenever a company boasts about being an “equal opportunity employer” it might as well go a step further and tell us which gender, race, ethnic background, and other discriminatory factors they really are looking for, because there isn’t anything “equal” about their employment practices.

Hiring someone because you don’t see the token black blind man anywhere in your office isn’t giving someone who wouldn’t normally get hired a break, its discrimination in the worst possible way – its blatantly labelling people for what they are instead of who they are.

I applaud the TDSB for recognizing they don’t have enough men in their workforce. But if they got off their lazy butts and actually hired qualified teachers – regardless of gender – then maybe they wouldn’t be in this situation in the first place.

At least the TDSB publicly admitted it’s shortcomings – most companies continue to use “equal opportunity employment” lingo to discriminate regardless of how obvious it is when you walk into their offices what the dominant culture is.
I’ve worked at some companies – American Express, BMO Bank of Montreal – just to name a handful of offenders, where their so-called “equal opportunity employment” standards were so lacking, I felt like I was in another country – yet I was right here in Toronto, Canada.

At American Express Technologies (AET) at their Canadian offices in Markham, out of well over 300 people, all were Chinese. Well, all except myself, and maybe five to 10 others – you could literally count on your fingers the number of people that weren’t Asian on that team.

BMO Bank of Montreal’s Trader’s Help Desk in Toronto, Canada had one or two non-Asian women, while the remaining 30 or so individuals were Chinese men, when I was working for that company.

BMO and Amex both have equal opportunity employment policies, but just as the TDSB, they don’t work very well unless you happen to be the specific racial or gender group they want to hire.

Seems to me that “equal opportunity employer” gives some companies the ability to only hire those they WANT to work with – people that look like the hiring managers.

That’s certainly not “equal” but I suppose it does give an opportunity for the employer.

But that’s not an opportunity I’ll have in my company – we hire based on something sadly forgotten in today’s politically correct world – talent.

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