How to Eliminate Discrimination From Your Workplace
Today’s businesses should strive to eliminate prejudice and promote workplace diversity.
Businesses that fail to adapt to Canada’s changing workforce and marketplace may experience skill shortages and stagnant growth as Canada’s population continues to expand.
Those that care about their reputation, keeping competitive, and doing the right thing need to invest in combating prejudice and promoting diversity, says Ellen Austin, Director, Diversity & Inclusion at BDC. Don’t do it and it might affect your business, leaving you open to discrimination accusations or leave you short on talent.
Tips for eradicating prejudice and creating an inclusive workplace are offered by Austin.
Recognize your legal obligations.
Investigate your responsibilities under the law in terms of combatting discrimination and fostering a diverse workplace. Discrimination based on race, gender, ethnicity and other factors is prohibited under federal and provincial human rights legislation. Anti-discrimination policies are part of larger workplace discrimination and harassment policies in several jurisdictions.
To foster an inclusive work environment, even if policies are not required, it is recommended that they be implemented. Discriminatory practices should be defined in the policy, as well as procedures for reporting, investigating, and documenting allegations of prejudice.
Find out whether you have any responsibilities in regards to making accommodations for your employees. You may be required to accommodate workers with impairments or injuries, as well as accommodate employees of other faiths, by providing a work environment that is both accessible and accommodating to everyone.
Collaborate with local nonprofits and government agencies
If you want to hire more people from a certain demographic, you can work with community organizations to do it. For example, you can publicize job opportunities to non-profit placement services that assist newly arrived immigrants or elderly employees.
“That link to the community might help you identify the top applicants more rapidly,” Austin states. A person’s expertise, language capabilities, and location may all be figured out by them.
The third step is to eliminate hiring prejudices.
Eliminate prejudice in your employment process by conducting an audit. Candidates with strange names, gaps in employment experience, or foreign credentials are more likely to be overlooked by employers.
Blind recruitment—removing the name and other identifying information from résumés—is a feasible alternative. Additionally, it may be beneficial to outsource the recruiting process to a panel rather than a single person.
As part of their training, employees in charge of hiring should also learn how to read non-traditional résumés and overseas credentials. A candidate’s potential new capabilities should also be taken into account when evaluating their suitability for your company.
Hire a great applicant even if they don’t speak your language. “You may help newcomers by providing language courses”.
Learn more about how to assess the qualifications of newcomers to the country.
Adopt a new onboarding strategy.
Your onboarding process should be reevaluated to ensure that it is inclusive. A well-thought-out procedure helps to guarantee that new hires easily integrate and conveys a message that discrimination is not tolerated.
When it comes to harassment, discrimination, and workplace health and safety, Austin adds, “You should really explain what is and isn’t permitted behavior.” Make sure newcomers are aware of their legal rights. With new employees, “the more time you spend with them, the more confident, engaged, and productive they will be,”
Examine your training and procedures to make sure they are up to date.
Make adjustments to your training to meet the requirements of a variety of personnel. Think about training applicants who may otherwise be terrific employees but lack certain abilities.
Supervisors and human resources staff, for example, may benefit from diversity training. To make sure your policies are being followed, keep an eye on how your employees are interacting with one another.
It’s also a good idea to keep track of how well your company does when it comes to employing and promoting women, people of color, persons with disabilities, and Indigenous people.