Why do we need to talk about Gender?7:41 with Michelle Zohlman
Now that we’ve defined gender in-depth, let's discuss why we need to have an understanding of gender.
- Why Tech’s Approach to Fixing Its Gender Inequality Isn’t Working
- Why Gender Equality Is Good for Everyone — Men Included | Michael Kimmel | TED Talks
- What people miss about the gender wage gap
- Transgender employees in tech: Why this "progressive" industry has more work to do to achieve true gender inclusivity
- Toilets for everyone – moving to gender neutral bathrooms in our London office
- How Many Adults Identify as Transgender in the United States?
- Although this is common signage you may see, we want to acknowledge there is still debate around best signage to reflect gender-neutral bathrooms.
Now that we've defined gender in depth, you might be thinking, okay, 0:00 Michelle, so why do I need to know this? 0:04 Well, gender shows up everywhere for us, disparities between genders still exists. 0:07 Overall, men fall into the dominant category. 0:13 They hold privileges and have access to power by just being cis men, 0:16 while other genders do not. 0:22 The subordinate group is comprised of underrepresented and 0:24 oppressed groups, which include all other genders. 0:28 Keep in mind there are inequities among the subordinate genders too. 0:31 When we discuss gender, we have to acknowledge the stereotypes and 0:36 biases that are at play and how those may unconsciously impact our decisions. 0:41 It is those stereotypes and prejudices that affect the inequalities of treatment, 0:47 belonging and discrimination for genders. 0:53 One of the inequities we're going to focus on is pay inequity, 0:56 also referred to as the pay gap. 1:01 There are drastic differences in pay amongst genders. 1:04 Typically when we discuss the wage gap, 1:08 it is traditionally focused on differences in pay between men and women. 1:11 While this is important, we need to account for other identities, 1:15 also known as our intersectional identities. 1:20 For example, do white women and Black woman make comparable salaries? 1:24 Are Asian women and 1:30 Latinx women making comparable salaries to men who are Asian or Latinx? 1:31 Not only do we have to look at the disparities between genders, 1:37 but we need to go deeper. 1:42 In 2018 on average, women working full time earn 81.6 cents for 1:44 every dollar a man working full time earns. 1:50 Additionally, women's median annual earnings are $9,909 less than men's, 1:53 according to data from the US Census Bureau, that's a stark difference. 2:01 Gender in the workplace is a real issue that shows up in more ways than just 2:08 the wage gap. 2:12 In 2019, Allison Wynn researched and wrote an article for Harvard Business Review 2:13 on Why Tech's Approach to Fixing Its Gender Inequality Isn't Working. 2:19 She identified many ways that these disparities show up from 2:25 referral hiring to bias during performance evaluations. 2:28 In their specific study, 2:32 they conducted 50 interviews with high level executives responsible for 2:34 their company's gender equality initiative, as well as observed meetings 2:39 tied to this initiative from subcommittee meetings to unconscious bias training. 2:44 Interestingly enough, 2:49 she found that the focus was not to assist women in their personal growth, but 2:51 a focus on teaching them to fit the existing mold to advance their career. 2:56 Simply put, they did not focus on breaking that mold for women, 3:00 but having them conformed to fit what already existed. 3:05 Let's remember the mold that they created didn't have women 3:09 in mind when it was built. 3:14 Wynn shares how it is the outlook of the company that is skewed. 3:16 When speaking to employees, Wynn learned that people fell into stereotypes of 3:20 needing to think like a man, or that there isn't really a problem for them, but for 3:24 other companies. 3:29 Others question if that should be a priority. 3:30 Now we know these are problems. 3:34 How do we solve it? 3:37 Wynn shares many efforts you and companies can make including bias training, 3:39 mentorship programs, changing traditional recruitment practices, 3:44 reducing performance reward bias, and allocation of projects. 3:49 Make sure to check out their article in the teachers notes to read the full story. 3:54 This is just a glimpse of gender disparities that exist and 3:59 why it's important that we educate ourselves on gender. 4:02 I want you right now and throughout your career in tech to check in with 4:05 yourself and reflect on the following questions. 4:10 Is gender something you think about regularly? 4:16 Why or why not? 4:19 Do you believe your company, your community, or 4:22 you personally allow space for all genders to exist and belong authentically? 4:25 I asked you to reflect on these questions not to make you feel bad about yourself, 4:32 but to shed light on areas we need to be aware of, whether it's for our safety or 4:37 well being, or an area where we need to support our peers better. 4:43 It's a privilege not to have to think about our identities. 4:48 Personally, I think about gender a lot. 4:51 As a woman, I have to think about my safety when walking alone, or 4:55 how my behaviors may get stereotyped. 5:00 I believe I have worked at places and 5:03 been part of communities that haven't supported me and other genders. 5:05 I've worked at places that have gotten it right too. 5:09 Let's talk about what that looks like. 5:12 Have you heard of or seen gender neutral bathrooms before? 5:15 These are also known as gender inclusive bathrooms or all gender toilets, 5:19 among other names you might have seen. 5:24 The purpose of these bathrooms is to create a safer area for folks who identify 5:26 as transgender, intersex, or not entirely male or female to use the bathroom. 5:31 Notice I say safer and not safe. 5:37 It is common for women and transgender individuals to 5:40 encounter violence in public spaces such as bathrooms. 5:43 By calling it a men's bathroom or women's bathroom, 5:47 we are not encompassing all the identities using that space. 5:51 To put it simply, it doesn't represent everyone. 5:56 So as you're working in tech and 6:00 have a colleague who doesn't identify as traditionally male or female, 6:02 think about the species were they aren't represented or considered. 6:06 According to a Williams Institute study published in 2016, 6:10 an estimated 0.6% of adults, 6:16 about 1.4 million identify as transgender in the United States. 6:19 Do you think companies are considering bathrooms for 6:25 these folks when they want to work in tech? 6:28 If we're not thinking about everyone's experience in the tech industry, 6:30 then it should come as no surprise when folks don't want to work there. 6:35 Would you feel welcome working at a company that is not inclusive of your 6:39 identity? 6:43 Let's consider paternity leave. 6:44 Are men at your workplace given time off when having a baby? 6:47 Is it a reasonable amount of time? 6:51 Is it paid? 6:53 What about if you're adopting children? 6:55 Is that considered? 6:57 Another element to consider when determining gender inclusivity is 6:59 healthcare coverage. 7:04 Does the healthcare that your company negotiated cover procedures? 7:05 Is their inclusive dependent coverage for domestic partners and 7:10 not just married partners? 7:14 There's so much to consider when we're striving to be gender inclusive. 7:15 A good starting point is to ask these questions especially if you're someone who 7:21 is privileged who doesn't have to think about these challenges. 7:25 You can be an advocate for folks at your company and in your community. 7:29 Next we'll be jumping into sexuality, but 7:34 make sure to check out the teachers notes first to learn more. 7:37
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