Opinion: Diversity in the Workplace

I get it. There is injustice in the Canada, sure. Is it wrong? It definitely sucks and obviously we should try and curb it, however, what we are doing is not working. Kyle, what are you talking about we help thousands of people every day to escape famine, poverty, and inequality.

Well, gone are the days of the hippy movement that advocated for peace and unity. Gone are the days where we tried to work together as a collective to make all citizens lives better. Black Lives Matter (BLM), Free speech advocates and feminist movements all represent noble causes seeking to promote meaningful change within North America. Before I dive into my argument I want to make it very clear that I acknowledge there exist inequality and discrimination and I by no means condone it. That being said, are we taking the correct approach when trying to eliminate inequality? In my opinion, absolutely not.

The trend nowadays in politics is that of division. The left vs the right, those pro-abortion vs. pro-life, wage gap sympathizers vs economists, socialist’s vs capitalists and the list goes on. If you haven’t picked up on it already people can’t seem to get along when it comes to making decisions to fight issues of inequality, or topics that are subject to ethical dilemmas.

To further explain my argument of why our current approach to solving inequality isn’t working I’m going to examine Canada’s response to issues regarding inequality of women, visible minorities, and first nations within the Canadian workforce. Governments have been scratching their heads trying to figure out how to encourage employers to hire a proportional amount of women and minorities within the workforce. I can certainly concede there exists a large disparity of representation within the Canadian workforce. While I won’t be discussing statistics on the matter I will be scrutinizing the approach taken by the government.  It seems like nowadays on every piece of paper you fill out at school, in the workplace, or for political surveys they all have this stupid little section that makes you more qualified than someone else of equal standing.

No, I’m not talking about that stellar academic reference or your ten years of relevant work experience in the field. I’m talking about that entirely divisive section that asks you whether you’re a visible minority, female or you identify as xyz. While I understand the attempt here is to allow employers to hire a diverse workforce I think it’s actually counter-intuitive for promoting equality. Since many employers currently do consider ethnicity and gender for potential candidates to hire employers end up discriminating potential employees based on how they were born rather than how well suited they are for the position. Is this not the exact thing we are trying to prevent?

All things considered equal while negating sex or ethnicity the person with the greatest qualifications should be the one to get the job, scholarship ect.. Why is it that we blatantly force employers, government officials and universities to consider things like race and gender?  Why are not making meaningful steps toward truly reaching for equality? In my opinion, this is not a solution and like I stated its just not working. There still exists inequality in the workforce.

Well, Kyle, you’ve been telling me what’s wrong without providing any counter to how it should be done? It’s easy. Blind interviews, resumes with contact info but nothing stating race, or gender. Hiring laws that mandate only qualifications are what determine those who are hired, get the scholarship etc. Making meaningful steps towards a system that doesn’t discriminate in any sense of the word. But wait, Kyle, if there isn’t equality now how would this encourage equality?

The answer to this question is quite simple; it would allow employers greater freedom from scrutiny and more transparency with their practices. It would force those applicants to further their skill sets so it’s undeniable they are the right person for the job. People will no longer be able to make claims of discrimination when applying for jobs since all things considered employers don’t care whether your name is Tommy or Tammy, or whether you complexion works better burgundy or teal. Why is it, that instead of working to create a system completely transparent, fair and competitive we consider those who are born in a certain body?

It’s no surprise that lifestyles and jobs are often intermingled. Why are we not asking questions like, as a society is it expected that certain people don’t want to work certain jobs instead of simply looking at raw numbers and drawing unfounded conclusions based solely on discrimination? Look, I’m not saying that saying we don’t have a problem here. We do, it’s really terrible and frankly unfair to all citizens. Let’s stand together for true equality and not forced equality.

Allow competition and merit to drive diversity instead of regulation mandating you need a banana, a fish and 3 soccer balls in your workforce.