The concept of equality and diversity and the notions inherent therein are of high relevance to the workforce. This is because the workforce is perhaps the area where discrimination is most pronounced.
Today, various human groups share certain similarities that attach to them. These similarities range from age to gender and even race. However, while the similarities create a closed group that shares a feeling of oneness, it has also established a system of identification of differences between other groups. For instance, the feeling of oneness among Asians has similarly created a distinction of an Asian from an African American, a White, or a Black man. Even more, various other groups such as gender, age, religion, and sometimes disability have also created a system of distinction with other groups.
Although this appears natural in itself, it has, in turn, deteriorated into largescale discrimination among groups. In this light, there have been calls for equal treatment of gender and people regardless of diversity. In view of the above, this essay on equality and diversity overview identifies the underlying principles and attempts to eradicate discrimination.
Equality involves a provision of equal opportunity to everyone regardless of characteristics such as gender, race, religion, and personal beliefs, among others. It connotes an idea where treatment is fair, and discrimination due to differences gets eliminated. (Wentworth, 2018)
Noteworthy, this concept extends to the notion of equality of opportunity. That is, it connotes that everyone should have an equal opportunity to engage in activities regardless of their differences. For instance, this would involve two individuals with equal qualifications having a fair basis to compete instead of one having an advantage due to differences like religion, sexual orientation, and gender. (Wentworth, 2018)
Furthermore, there are specific characteristics that get protection from discrimination, and this is under the Equality Act 2010. These characteristics include ethnicity, gender reassignment, sex, disability, age, belief and religion, sexual orientation, marriage and civil partnership, and pregnancy and maternity. Hence, thanks to this Act, it is now a ground for action where there is an inkling of discrimination based on the criteria above. (Wentworth, 2018)
Diversity, in itself, involves the identification of differences among a group of persons. As such, it involves first identifying that there are, in fact, differences within a group either due to gender, religion, or race. It is then viewing these differences as contributing positively to the team rather than constituting a basis for discrimination. (Wentworth, 2018)
Similarly, diversity requires individuals and groups to value and celebrate human differences. As such, it involves recognizing and considering people’s diverse backgrounds, skills, knowledge, and experience as an excellent addition to a team. (Wentworth, 2018)
Consequently, it requires individuals to use these differences to establish an effective and productive workforce. In the same vein, it recognizes that beyond tolerating differences, it is necessary to build alliances that can effectively eradicate discrimination. (Wentworth, 2018)
The idea of equality and diversity are not just essential concepts that exist in the abstract sense. Instead, they are of relevance and application to practical life scenarios. These scenarios include the workforce and education or learning.
Equality and Diversity in the Workforce
The concept of equality and diversity and the notions inherent therein are of high relevance to the workforce. This is because the workforce is perhaps the area where discrimination is most pronounced. For instance, reports indicate that workers with English as their second language may only get low-skilled or manual jobs – discrimination based on language. (Wentworth, 2018)
In the same vein, there is a perception of people’s capabilities based on factors such as race and gender in the workplace. For instance, it was once a stereotype that the female gender could not function in individual management offices due to the supposed limitations of their sex. (Wentworth, 2018)
Noteworthy, this is where equality and diversity come in. It engenders the elimination of discrimination based on differences. It promotes the encouragement of diversity in the workplace in a bid to benefit from the broad range of perspectives and thinking that comes with it.
Similarly, its application is relevant to areas of recruitment, pay, and promotion. Hence, procedures guiding the recruitment of new members must avoid rejection on grounds such as gender, race, sexuality, or other personal belief. In the same vein, evaluation for promotion should be based on a unified system with everyone offered an opportunity to get promoted.
As regards pay, this involves a unified pay for an individual at the same level. As such, no one is paid more merely because of their age, religion, gender, sexuality, and other bases of discrimination.
Equality and Diversity in Education and Learning
The idea of equality and diversity is particularly relevant to learning and education. This is because of the orthodox discriminatory tendencies within the educational sector. For instance, in times past, there was significant discrimination in the educational sector based on race as Blacks and Whites were unable to learn in the same room.
Although this has been mostly resolved, discrimination still exists in the educational sector based on disability and language differences. Noteworthy, this is where equality and diversity come in. It is relevant as a tool that can eradicate discrimination against disabled kids while providing them with a platform to achieve their goals and aspirations.
Even more, the notions inherent in diversity and equality are also relevant to learning within the workplace. For instance, there are reports that black workers and black female workers receive fewer opportunities for training. However, by establishing the ideal of equality and the blessings in diversity, it becomes more likely to gear organizations toward an equal opportunity perspective. (Unionlearn)
This essay on equality and diversity has made prominent the ever-increasing relevance of diversity and equality in the workforce and learning and education. It has also detailed the notion inherent in the concept. However, while this notion has attracted considerable attention in recent times, it is clear that there is still much to be done.
In light of this, it is further necessary to ensure strict compliance with the legislative enactment limiting discrimination. Also, organizations must adopt strict procedures that promote equality of opportunity within their workforce while maximizing its blend of diversity. Noteworthy, this also offers the firms various benefits like reducing the rate of turnover.