Recommended Reading

by Race in the Workplace special correspondent Erica

Annapolis firefighter loses reverse discrimination suit - HometownAnnapolis.com
A white firefighter consistently ranked near the top of the list for a promotion to lieutenant, but two minority candidates were picked over him. The judge ruled that the fire chief “exercised permissible discretion.” (via stereohyped)

How to Get a Job on Craigslist - Guy Kawasaki
Mostly normal job hunting advice, but there is some added context around how Craigslist works. If you want dibs on that $20 coffee table, you’ve got to respond first and respond best (i.e., show up first, preferably with cash). Same goes for a job. Respond quickly, and respond well (but don’t offer cash).

Suspended NFL Players Sue Under ADA - Workplace Prof Blog
The two players claim their suspensions violated the Americans with Disabilities Act. “This is an interesting dispute as the ADA has very specific language when it comes to treating alcoholism as a disability. Those currently abusing alcohol are not covered by the ADA, while those who have a record of alcoholism and have received treatment are considered disabled for purposes of the ADA. So whether Thurman and Cox are successful will largely depend on whether they are still currently abusing alcohol or whether they are in rehabilitation mode. There is also a subsidiary issue about how long you must be off alcohol before being consider to no longer be a current abuser. Some cases requires two months or more and if these NFL Players were recently suspended for failing a test, they might be out of luck.”

But You Look So Good! and 7 Other Things NOT to Say to a Person With a Non-Visible Disability - DiversityInc.com
“Ninety-six percent of illnesses are invisible to the average person… [L]ooking good and feeling good are two very different things—and the impact of a disability or illness is as much psychological as it is physical. From the glares people with non-visible disabilities get after parking in a handicapped spot to the ‘You’re so lucky you get to stay in bed all day’ comments, the ignorance of the limitations of life with a chronic illness or disability can hurt as much as the actual pain.”

Bush Nominee for EEOC Bitterly Withdraws - DiversityInc.com
“Eight former DoJ officials wrote a letter opposing [David] Palmer’s confirmation, accusing him of poor leadership and ineffective management during his tenure that undermined the mission of the department…. Most alarming are the alleged discrimination complaints against Palmer himself. The letter claims that Palmer treated co-workers with ‘disdain and contempt,’ and was ‘at least once’ the subject of a discrimination complaint, which arose after he allegedly tried to get a woman with whom he had been romantically involved fired from federal service.”

Recommended Reading is a weekly feature where we link to some of our favorite workplace-related blog posts and articles. If you would like to suggest a link to Erica, please email tips@raceintheworkplace.com

Recommended Reading

by Race in the Workplace special correspondent Erica

Nooses, Swastika Evidence In Lawsuit - WMAQ Chicago
In the midst of a civil rights lawsuit at Navistar International, “… a bag of hangman’s nooses was found under the plant’s human resources director’s desk … Racist graffiti found throughout the plant was also allegedly ignored. The graffiti included the ‘N word’ on a paper towel holder, pictures of nooses that included the phrase, ‘Hang ‘em high,’ a mop painted in imitation of a black woman’s hair and a swastika on the end of a wooden stick.” A woman who reported the use of the n-word got fired. The perpetrators considered it all “just a joke.” (via Resist Racism)

Single Incidences that Create a Hostile and Offensive Work Environment - The Black Factor
“[T]here are single incidences that are legally recognized as immediately being vile enough to rise to the level of creating a hostile and offensive work environment for an African American employee. Therefore, it would only take one occurrence to create a workplace situation that would require immediate action from a supervisor or other member of authority within a company.” The aforementioned bag of nooses would be one such incidence.

Interim Guidance on the use of Race and Ethnic Categories in Affirmative Action Programs - U.S. Department of Labor Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs
“The existing EEO-1 Report calls for workforce data to be broken down by nine job categories, using five race and ethnic categories. The revised EEO-1 Report changes the race and ethnic categories by adding a new category titled ‘two or more races’ and dividing the category ‘Asian or Pacific Islander’ into two separate categories - ‘Asian’ and ‘Native Hawaiian or other Pacific Islanders.’” (via DCI Consulting’s OFCCP Blog)

Don’t Ask–Maybe - Forbes.com
What a company can and can’t ask in a pre-employment inquiry. It varies from state to state, must be worded carefully, and the intent in asking plays a role in its legality.

‘Glamour’ Editor To Lady Lawyers: Being Black Is Kinda A Corporate “Don’t” - Jezebel
A Glamour editor calls afros and dreadlocks fashion don’ts during a presentation to New York law firm.

Procedural Path Dependence: Discrimination and the Civil-Criminal Divide by Julie Suk - Social Science Research Network
Whether a case is tried via criminal or civil proceedings influences the way the case is tried (i.e., how you gather evidence, etc.) This is known as procedural path dependence. Julie Suk explores the constraints of the American system, compares them to the French system, and explains how employment discrimination cases must break out of the mold to be properly tried. (via Workplace Prof Blog)

Recommended Reading is a weekly feature where we link to some of our favorite workplace-related blog posts and articles. If you would like to suggest a link to Erica, please email tips@raceintheworkplace.com

Recommended Reading

by Race in the Workplace special correspondent Erica

Coffee Mug Fuels Controversy - Hartford Courant
“A coffee mug used by Department of Public Safety Commissioner John A. Danaher III showing the Confederate flag in a Civil War battle has angered black leaders who said it was insensitive to display a symbol of hate, particularly when the state police have been under fire for complaints of racism.”

The Stepford Staff: Or How It Happens That a Boss Is Cloned - Wall Street Journal’s Cubicle Culture (subscription)
“Yet managers, or anyone recruiting, are often the last to recognize the irrelevant behavior. Prof. Chatman’s research shows there’s no limit to the ’suck up till you die’ approach to authority. That means flattery, including its sincerest form, is lapped up by bosses who view it as a sign they’ve successfully influenced their people. That may explain why ‘people who have no interest at all in golf, or in walking around a pollen field of a golf course in the springtime, take up golf,’ says executive-search consultant Patricia Cook, who estimates that as many as 70% of executives look for a version of themselves when hiring.”

Should “The Price is Right” Start Thinking BFOQ - Workplace Prof Blog
Paul Secunda, upon finding out that only men were auditioned to replace Bob Barker, wonders if being a man is a bona fide occupational qualification for the role of “The Price is Right” host. If not, he says Rosie O’Donnell could could have grounds for a sex discrimination lawsuit.

Hillary: Being a Woman Is Non-Issue - Wall Street Journal’s The Juggle
In light of Hillary Clinton’s downplaying of her gender in last week’s CNN/YouTube debate, Sara Schaefer Muñoz asks, “If women want to get ahead in business, are there cases in which emphasizing so-called female qualities — like compassion or a better understanding of female clients — help? Or are females more likely to advance if they make their gender a non-issue?”

Michael Moore’s Sicko and Some Thoughts About Ethical Compensation Practices - KnowHR Blog
“How in the hell can someone create a bonus structure that rewards people for denying legitimate claims? I’m not talking about bogus claims here. I’m not talking about a company’s right to make money — I definitely think they should. I’m not talking about good bonus structures. I’m talking about creating bonus and pay structures that encourage unethical behavior.” Including a comment from Dr. Linda Peeno, who appears in the movie.

Charting the Future of College Affirmative Action: Legal Victories, Continuing Attacks, and New Research - The Civil Rights Project
“The Civil Rights Project… says that the Supreme Court’s 2003 decision upholding race-conscious admissions policies at the University of Michigan’s law school should have been seen as a green light to colleges to continue considering students’ race and ethnicity for the sake of promoting diversity. Instead, the report argues, critics of affirmative action — including many conservative advocacy groups and officials in the Bush administration — have “attempted to interpret the law as if they had won the case” and have managed to pressure many colleges to quietly abandon policies and programs that were within the bounds of the law.” (via The Chronicle of Higher Education News Blog and Workplace Blog)

Nearly Ten Percent of Companies Have Fired Bloggers, Survey Claims - Wired.com
Paul Secunda says, “I am not surprised as companies appear to be finally becoming aware of the damage a lone blogger can do other employees and to a company’s image and reputation. I would expect blog-related discipline in the work place to continue to increase to the level at which employees are now being punished for personal phone calls, improper internet use, and inappropriate emails.”

blog judgment - Ask a Manager
An employee mentions her blog when interviewing for a job and eventually gets hired. Her manager occasionally reads the blog and one day finds a complaint about himself.

Recommended Reading is a weekly feature where we link to some of our favorite workplace-related blog posts and articles. If you would like to suggest a link to Erica, please email tips@raceintheworkplace.com

Recommended Reading

by Race in the Workplace special correspondent Erica

Minority workers still fighting job recruiters’ misconceptions - The Clarion-Ledger
“‘The titans of business really don’t care about this issue,’ [executive recruiter Ken Arroyo Roldan] says. ‘They have this ‘I gave at the gate’ mentality. Many executives have been sensitized to death (about minorities) but at the end of the day, are they exposed to others? No. It’s a gated community of white males.’”

EEOC Wants to ‘E-Race’ Discrimination in the Workplace - NPR
Audio story. “Naomi Earp, chair of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, discusses the current state of discrimination in the workplace and their new anti-discrimination initiative.”

Mixed Messages on Affirmative Action - Inside Higher Ed
Explaining the nuances between the Supreme Court ruling last week rejecting the assignment of kids to schools based on race and the Supreme Court’s previous rulings on affirmative action in colleges and universities. (via Workplace Blog)

Best Practices or Best Guesses? Assessing the Efficacy of Corporate Affirmative Action and Diversity Policies - The American Sociological Review (PDF)
Diversity training and diversity evaluation for management was the least effective. Networking and mentorship were moderately effective. Establishing responsibility for diversity was most effective. (via Workplace Prof Blog)

Workplace Segregation in the United States: Race, Ethnicity, and Skill - IDEAS: Economics and Finance Research
“We define segregation based on the extent to which workers are more or less likely to be in workplaces with members of the same group.” “Only a tiny portion (3%) of racial segregation in the workplace is driven by education differences between blacks and whites, but a substantial fraction of ethnic segregation in the workplace (32%) can be attributed to differences in language proficiency.”

Recommended Reading is a weekly feature where we link to some of our favorite workplace-related blog posts and articles. If you would like to suggest a link to Erica, please email tips@raceintheworkplace.com

Recommended Reading

by Race in the Workplace special correspondent Erica

The New Recruiting Psychographic Persona - Employee Evolution
The author put together a list of things that Millennials are looking for in a job to give her company’s HR department a better sense of the landscape as they reconsidered their recruiting materials. With all the talk of how this generation has been raised to really not think about race (i.e., ignore it, not necessarily truly have it be a non-issue), I wonder how highly they value the face of diversity (or lack thereof) a company puts forth.

Gap Analysis - CFO Magazine
“Why diversity programs work better for women than for minorities.” Demographics and socioeconomics mean a much larger pipeline of women. More successful mentoring and workplace accommodations mean much happier female employees. (Thx, Sallie!)

Now and Then: Minorities and Michigan - Inside Higher Ed
Following the state of Michigan’s passage of Proposal 2 banning affirmative action at all public employers, minority enrollment at the University of Michigan Law School dropped from 39.6% to 5.5%.

Without Affirmative Action, Diversity Suffers - TIME’s Work in Progress
Lisa Takeuchi Cullen reacts to the news out of the University of Michigan Law School. We’re reminded not to use the “Q” word (”quota”). The usual arguing for and against affirmative action ensues in the comments, including the use of crayola colors and my personal favorite: “I’m a minority and I think it’s wrong.”

Race Discrimination - Workplace Fairness
Good background on the legal definition of race discrimination and how Title VII of the Civil Rights Act governs that.

Recommended Reading is a weekly feature where we link to some of our favorite workplace-related blog posts and articles. If you would like to suggest a link to Erica, please email tips@raceintheworkplace.com

Recommended Reading

by Race in the Workplace special correspondent Erica

A decade of race-blind admissions at Cal - Boston.com
Has it really been that long already? Numbers of blacks and hispanics in the University of California system have rebounded after the initial drop off, but shifted away from Berkeley and UCLA to the other campuses, and still are not keeping pace with the high school graduation rate. Article includes lots of blather from Ward Connerly. (via Workplace Blog)

Corporate Diversity Programs Aim Involve White Males as Leaders - CareerJournal The article suggests white men take diversity issues more seriously when they’re presented by a white man. I suppose being a white male doesn’t necessarily preclude one from being knowledgeable about and invested in diversity initiatives. (via Workplace Prof Blog)

Don’t Let Whites In The Workplace Tell You How You Should Feel! - The Black Factor
“You shouldn’t feel that way.” “Don’t be so sensitive.” Put these in that category of things that I keep thinking that people don’t say anymore, but they still do. Don’t discount your feelings, and bone up on the company’s policies.

‘Tearing Down the Gates’ - Inside Higher Ed
Q & A with Peter Sacks on his new book, Tearing Down the Gates: Confronting the Class Divide in American Education. (via Workplace Blog)

What the jargon you use reveals about you - Brazen Careerist
I hate corporate-speak with a passion and I try to make a point not to use it, even though many people around me do. It’s entirely possible to get your point across without resorting to the phrase of the week. Penelope Trunk translates some of the most common jargon you hear and the commenters include some of their own favorites.

Recommended Reading is a weekly feature where we link to some of our favorite workplace-related blog posts and articles. If you would like to suggest a link to Erica, please email tips@raceintheworkplace.com