Formerly known as BAME Recruitment

18 Feb 2022

Diversity Lens - Issue 114

Feb 18

Diversity Lens - Issue 114

Welcome to Diversity Lens.

 

Last week Race Equality Matters launched a powerful campaign with a simple premise: everyone deserves to have their name pronounced correctly. The campaign seeks to address the disproportionate levels of name mispronunciation people of colour experience.

When the Vice President of the US Kamala Harris took to office, the explicit mispronunciation of her name was used as a political tactic by those seeking to other her along ethnic lines. Being on the receiving end is not always explicit discrimination, however, it does always send the message that your identity doesn’t warrant the effort.

The #MyNameIs movement inspired the sharing of many personal stories about names that others find harder to grasp. Our story of the week is no different as it relates to the misspelling of my name, something I encounter frequently in my largely text communication-based role. 

Instagram
Twitter
LinkedIn
Facebook
Website
Email
 
 
"Getting a name right matters"Thoughts by Almaas Bokhari, Customer Success Consultant

This week alone I have corrected the spelling of my name 3 times, despite the correct spelling being available in the threads where this occurred.

For ten years, I was the person who introduced themselves as ‘Al’, a relic from a retail job which handed me this new, more palatable name on a badge. No one thought to ask me if I was okay with it prior, forced upon me to make my name "easier" to English customers. Back then it came as a revelation, those awkward othering conversations could be avoided, this was good.

Adopting anglicised names is commonplace amongst people like me, but studies indicate that doing this correlates with overall lower self-esteem. A year or so ago ‘Al’ no longer felt like the easiest option for me.

The imposition of eurocentric ideals of being throughout my life began weighing on me heavily, so I decided to reclaim my identity, and have started to introduce myself as Almaas again, my real name.

This means I am constantly correcting spelling. I concede that double-A is a rarity in this language, there aren’t many Aardvarks named Aaron. Yet my name is Almaas, Arabic meaning diamond, not Al or Almass which have no meaning. That meaning is worth more to me now than having to endure regular conversations where I gingerly correct both colleagues and clients. I will no longer package my identity in a European guise in order to gain acceptance. To conclude I wish to ask you a question, is adapting your name or ignoring common misspellings still the easiest path for you too?

“Give your daughters difficult names.

Names that command the full use of the tongue.

My name makes you want to tell me the truth.

My name does not allow me to trust anyone

who cannot pronounce it right.”

— Warsan Shire

 
Text: IN OTHER NEWS. Background image shows picture of protestors.
EHRC: Here’s why the equality watchdog is under fire for its stance on trans rights
Placard reads
The human rights body responsible for promoting and enforcing equality and non-discrimination laws has been the source of much debate in recent months. The Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) has gone against the grain on multiple occasions, from suggesting a "differentiated approach" to a trans ‘conversion therapy’ ban, to calling on Scotland to pause its gender recognition reforms. Many LGBTQIA+ organisations have expressed concern about EHRC's future and its independence from the government, with one claiming that "EHRC is being influenced by the government's anti-trans agenda."

"The politicisation of the UK's human rights body has placed trans people in the firing line, but this attempt to create a hierarchy of human rights in the UK is a very real threat to everyone"

Schools in England given guidance to avoid biased teaching
The government is offering official new guidance to schools on how to “teach sensitive issues in a non-biased way”. Teachers are prohibited from expressing their own political views, but should still cover complex topics impartially, “such as the history of the British empire of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict”. There is some controversy over the new guidance and whether this is necessary or superfluous government involvement.
Netherlands could be next to ban ‘medieval’ conversion therapy while UK twiddles thumbs
Person at protests holding placard saying 'Actually ban conversion therapy'
A proposed bill in the Netherlands would see ‘conversion therapy’ penalised by hefty fines and a risk of imprisonment. Early signs show majority support in parliament. The Netherlands were the first nation to legalise gay marriage in 2001 but have lagged behind on this issue, much like the UK who, despite pledging to make the ban in 2018, have failed to follow through thus far.
An unidentified patient who was diagnosed with HIV in 2013 may have been cured. The patient observed a reduction in symptoms for almost four years before she was able to stop taking HIV medication. This breakthrough procedure, which uses umbilical cord blood, was delivered as a cancer treatment for the unnamed patient. An HIV expert warns that the procedure will not likely become commonplace, but instead a source of “inspiration to the field and perhaps the road map.”
Text: ENTER THE WORK SPHERE. Background image shows picture of protestors.
The inclusive employer spotlight: eBay logo
Sliding into the headline this week is a company that needs no introductions: eBay, recent winner of Glassdoor’s 2022 Employees’ Choice Award!

Diversity and inclusion at eBay goes well beyond a moral necessity - it’s the foundation of their business model, and the reason why they've been our partner since the beginning. Want to know more? Jump on over to their employer profile on Diversifying.io.
 
Is your company inclusive of neurodivergent employees?
Neurodiversity in the workforce is on the rise, yet unemployment rates in autistic people, for example, remain steep at around 80%. Neurodiversity is beginning to be seen as more of a staple in diversity and inclusion agendas. We’re seeing some really positive steps to support neurodiverse people during the hiring process, and once within an organisation. HBR share how some employers have been successful in supporting neurodivergent employees, despite lacking huge resources.
Barriers for women in tech report 2022
WeAreTechWomen partnered with Ipsos MORI and the Tech Talent Charter to conduct this important study of women in tech and the barriers they are faced with. Among the most shocking finding is that one in five women in tech are thinking of leaving their roles - though this is likely in line with wider trends of resignations. Concerningly, 58% of respondents noted that role models are key in attracting them to organisations, but that this female representation in leadership is lacking in the field. Just a third of respondents reported feeling supported to progress within their career.

"Depressingly in this day and age, more than half of respondents (52%) still feel that their gender limits them in their careers.”

EVENT Flexpo: What employers are looking for in a flexible workforce
Flexpo are all about a ?real? work life balance that works for you.

Next Thursday 24th our wonderful founder Cynthia Davis join the summit, giving her expert & intersectional advice on a flexible workforce. Flexpo describe it as "An unmissable conversation with the extraordinary Cynthia Davis during which Cynthia will share the skills, capabilities and behaviours employers need from employees who work in flexible ways." Tune in at 10:35, or come visit our virtual stall at any point in the day.

Need support on
your D&I journey?

Get in touch

If you have any questions or would like to post a job, please use the form below to get in touch.

Call to Action