Discrimination in the workplace is not only a slippery slope but it is also a delicate situation to bring into the light. Whether you are discriminated by gender, sexuality, or race; there are multiple levels to getting to the point for your voice to be heard. Women are constantly faced with discrimination but how do you professionally address it without it becoming a legal mess?
Those who are not women in the workplace, they have never felt the biases and disadvantages that females face on a daily basis. Women face challenges that range from exclusions internally, pay inequality, and even daily subtle sexual references paired with requests for petty tasks. There are double standards in work environments that many either do not realize are happening or that they benefit from said discrimination.
A prime example that happens too often would be how women tend to be taken out of consideration for certain promotions due to conflicts with them taking a maternity leave. Situations like this are why women get held back in progressing internally at their place of work.
Always make a point to communicate discrimination when you see it happening. Find someone who will be able to change the situation based on what you have experienced. Highlight the unconscious biases to a trusted person internally.
There are plenty of resources to avoid these subtle discriminations from happening, as well. Pitching training courses to be implemented is a great first step to take when attempting to change the internal culture. Outside reinforcement that can show an entire team how to identify the discrimination and how to change their mindset around it is a great way to create change.
A training course can break down pre-established patterns and biases that, not just one gender may have, but biases that both may see themselves acting on.
Be sure to also protect yourself with policy. Establish yourself as a zero-tolerance person for discrimination; never take the passive role. Lay down the law in situations that arise with a biased undertone. As well, also ensure that your place of work has actual policies surrounding no tolerance for discrimination. Not only will it give you the confidence that your employer has your back but it also protects others, in the future, who could experience different forms of discrimination. Always be vocal about having written policies, whether it be a handbook or a procedure, because it allows the law to be on your side when battling underlying discrimination in your place of work.