Discrimination At Workplace – A Disturbing Menace

Posted on July 31, 2011 in Society

By Ankur Shukla:

We all know that discrimination is prevalent in our society even today and it continues with its detrimental effects on each one of us through our daily lives. We have witnessed discrimination in different aspects of life like inequality in income distribution, religion and race discrimination, discrimination in educational system, in sports, etc. But the most serious issue is the gender discrimination which has constantly degraded the values of society to which we belong. Among all the different kinds of discrimination, the most serious is the gender discrimination which we as a society have failed to deal with since ages.

What is Gender Discrimination?

Discrimination refers to inequality. Gender discrimination therefore refers to inequality between people of opposite sex. It occurs in various areas and the most famous example of gender discrimination is the desire to have a male child in the family. Modern people refer to it as narrow minded thinking or orthodox thinking, but many of the so called sophisticated people too are in the favour of having a male child. Apart from this, one serious area of discrimination is the gender discrimination at workplaces.

Gender Discrimination at Workplace

There is an alarming rise in the rates of increasing gender discrimination at workplaces nowadays. Every now and then we come across reports related to gender discrimination at workplace. Researchers have also ratified this. Gender discrimination can take place in various forms in respect to unusual or unequal and harsh treatment to a person of one sex as compared to the person of the other sex.

  • Often, there is discrimination in terms of wage pay to the women employees as compared to male employees as the women are often tagged as the ‘housewife material’ and hence is offered lower wages/salaries and men  are considered hard working and dedicated comparatively. This is a common discrimination that women laborers face.
  • Many a times, women (housewives) generally step out of their houses during their difficult times to deal with the hardships to earn to provide the basic necessities to their family and hence the employers take the advantage of the situation by providing lower salaries irrespective of the qualities or qualifications of the employee and the women are forced to accept the low salaries.
  • The bosses or employers at times demand sexual favours from the women/men employees if they are to save their position and their job. It also includes molestation, blackmailing them for the job.
  • Often, the male employees are ignored for meetings where the clients are needed to be entertained and the women employees are preferred for various reasons even though the male employees might possess much more knowledge than the female employees in that particular area of expertise.
  • Sexual harassment is another case of gender discrimination at workplace.
  • Bullying employees and delegating office work which might be not cover the specialization of the concerned employee to.
  • The men are often rewarded with higher incentives and salaries as compared to women, but it is to be noted that the women in several cases have proved to be more deserving and hardworking and deserve a better position in the area of workplace.
  • Promotion are generally handed to the male employees as they are expected to be more responsible and capable of handling the job which might be a debatable question as nowadays women are better off as compared to the men at top level of organization.
  • Research has stated that in workplaces men and women who are generally involved with the other sex are judged more harshly when they commit mistakes and are constantly in danger of falling off a “glass cliff” in the workplace. Women are more vulnerable to such a fall.

The gender discrimination prevails in the society and will continue to detriment the society unless some strict laws are put into action. However, signs of decrease are recorded in gender discrimination at workplace as the working people are now opening up and speaking up for their rights which have put the government under immense pressure to strengthen the workplace laws and order.