Tech Now + Beyond

Google, let’s stop discriminating in the workplace

Gender gaps. Sexism. Discrimination. Bias. Societal norms. Fix it, Google.

Disclaimer: High level of sarcasm is intended.

Since the time of women’s suffrage (which, indeed, was a triumphant feat in American history for white women) women have unfortunately been on the back burner in terms of equality in the workplace. In 2013, a woman working full time, year-round in the U.S. earned 78 percent of a man’s earnings. That number rose a jaw-dropping one percent since 2012 — a significant change that will definitely help women all around the U.S. with their careers.

In recent news, Google stated that 21 percent of tech hires last year were women, boosting the overall number of women in technical roles by 1 percent, intended to increase diversity. This is yet another jaw-dropping 1 percent increase in efforts to really make women feel equal to their male counterparts. *snaps*

Not only are women affected by the exclusiveness of White men in the technology industry, but minorities are less inclined to be accepted into their tech “cliques” as well.

Google said that it has attempted to increase its Black and Hispanic employees. In reality, Blacks and Hispanics make up only 2 and 3 percent of Google’s total workforce of over 50,000.

So why are women paid less than men? Why do minority men and women make up such a small amount of the technology workforce?

Gender gaps. Sexism. Discrimination. Bias. Societal norms.

Women in the workforce nowadays have proven to receive the same education as men in the US, and have even surpassed men in educational achievement in other countries. There is no problem with female achievement.

The “problem” arises when women try to balance work and family, and women end up carrying nearly all of the caregiving responsibilities.

Much of the U.S. population still believes in establishing the woman as the “elite” caregiver in a family. News flash–they’re your children too, men.

When some employers view potential minority applicants, they may adhere to racial stereotypes and thus, refuse to hire applicants based on racial biases.

Ellen Pao, lawyer and Interim Chief Executive of Reddit, is an inspiring example of what a woman should try to do when experiencing sexism at work.

Pao is appealing her gender discrimination case against a Silicon Valley venture capital firm, Kleiner, Perkins, Caufield, and Byers after allegations of unwanted sexual advances, exclusion from all-male ski trips, uncomfortable conversations about pornography, and more.

The importance of her trial is the awareness it brings about widespread gender gaps in the tech industry. Women and minorities need to stand up for themselves and know what steps to take when facing discrimination from employers and potential employers (with no mercy). The early societal construct of what traditional men and women’s roles have evolved and should not be the basis for discrimination in the workplace.

By Erum Jaffrey

Erum is a junior international relations major at the University of Southern California. As a representative for the Muslim South Asian diaspora, she hopes to bring a voice for underrepresented minority women in the news media.

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