How to Advocate for Diversity in Your Workplace

How to Advocate for Diversity in Your Workplace

Diversity is more than just an idealistic notion. It is a practical solution for increasing productivity for businesses, building their bottom lines. How do you avoid discrimination and advocate for diversity in the workplace? The following offers some important tips. 

Preventing Discrimination in the Workplace

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) advises that there are a number of federal laws and statutes that prohibit discrimination of different types in the workplace. Employers are prohibited from discriminating against employees on the basis of their age, color, disability status, national origin, race, religion, or sex. One of the first steps in being an advocate for diversity is identifying the places it is most likely to happen. This includes: 

  • When accepting job applications;
  • Throughout the hiring process;
  • In determining pay rates and types of positions in a company;
  • When assigning different work-related tasks;
  • In allowing certain types of behavior;
  • When deciding to promote workers to better positions;
  • When providing benefits;
  • In penalizing workers and determining whether they should be fired or demoted. 

If you see or suspect any of the above, it is important to speak out immediately. Employees who are discriminated against are entitled to file a claim seeking job reinstatement, reimbursement for lost wages, and compensation for other costs, such as damage to their careers. The same types of protections are available for those who file complaints or take other actions against it. You may have the right to sue your employer if you are demoted, fired, or otherwise penalized for speaking out and being a strong advocate for diversity and against discrimination. 

Advocating for Diversity

According to the investment and financial literacy platform Ellevest, people in diverse workplaces are generally more productive, make better decisions, are able to collaborate more effectively, and see less turnover among employees. In addition to speaking out against discrimination, they recommend taking proactive steps as an advocate: 

  • Recommend people from diverse groups for positions with your company;
  • Eliminate biographical information from applications;
  • Encourage decision-makers to be diverse in hiring practices; 
  • Actively mentor others for careers in your field;
  • Create a diversity task force that looks for potential problems and makes suggestions;
  • Inquire as to how your company measures diversity and inclusion;
  • Encourage workers to share their stories of discrimination and actively listen;
  • Speak up against backlash to diversity programs and educate others regarding the many practical ways the company and all of its employees can benefit.  

Our Chicago Discrimination Attorney is Here to Help

If you have been discriminated against in the workplace or faced penalties for speaking out against it or advocating for diversity, reach out to the Law Office of Mitchell A. Kline. We provide professional legal representation, making sure your rights are protected. To request a consultation, call or contact our Illinois discrimination attorney online today.