GENDER BASED JOB DISCRIMINATION
This question about gender based job discrimination may be an ethics question or it may be about etiquette, perhaps you can help me. I’ve applied for a big job that I know I’ll be good at.
Am I under any obligation to give information about my children? Friends, who are also mothers in a similar dilemma and “confessed” to having children, didn’t get the job.
I am totally covered as far as childcare is concerned, but if something did come up and it was discovered that I have children, will it seem that I’ve done something remiss by not having volunteered that information?
On the job application there should not have been a question about children or, for that matter, any gender based job discrimnation issue. During a job interview you’re not obliged to bring up your parental status. You should not be asked.
Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964: Equal Opportunity, prohibits employment discrimination based on race, color, religion, national origin and sex. Legally, you cannot be penalized for being a mother.
- Remember that a man who makes it known that he has children is traditionally paid a higher salary or/and accrues more benefits than a woman in the same job.
- Men in the workplace are rewarded for having children, while women doing the same job are penalized.
Keep your parental status private: My best advice is to keep quiet about the kids until after you’re weathered and tested. Leave your children’s photos in your office desk drawer and on your cellphone. Eventually when you’ve secured the respect of your colleagues and those you report to, gently let out tidbits of news about your brilliant off-spring. Sorry, that’s the way it is.
- Should a colleague say, “I didn’t know that you had children,” nonchalantly respond saying, “I didn’t think anyone would be interested.”
The biggest mistake in terms of office politics is swearing one or two coworkers to secrecy. Your maternal status shouldn’t be a secret per se, as a man wouldn’t have had to keep his adorable kids hush-hush, because strutting paternity is considered macho.
It’s the gaming system. You’re not alone. I know that it doesn’t sound fair, but until you’re sure of safe footing, you may have to play the game.
Of course, if you’re directly asked in a job interview (which is illegal) it may be the first clue that the job really isn’t for you.
- Check out the company culture at glassdoor.com.
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