Workplace gender equality: It’s everyone’s responsibility
Achieving gender equality is everyone’s responsibility. It is not solely the responsibility of women nor is it solely the responsibility of men. It belongs to everyone of all genders including women, men, non-binary and gender diverse individuals. Gender equality is everyone’s responsibility because it benefits us all.
If you are working to advance DEI in your workplace, it can be incredibly hard to prevent it from becoming siloed or isolated in one area of your organization. When a workplace begins its DEI journey, it is common to assign it to a Human Resources unit or to one specific person. It is commonly assigned to a person to lead this work “off the side of their desk.” DEI is transformational work and it can be extremely difficult to achieve gains and make progress if a person is only able to devout part-time hours to it without having adequate DEI expertise.
It is also really common for workplaces to assign DEI work to a woman of any diversity or to a Black, Indigenous, Person of Colour (BIPOC). It is assumed that a person who is part of a marginalized or underrepresented group in the workplace would have the passion and expertise to advance DEI. This can sometimes be the case, however, DEI work can be exhausting and can cause a person with lived experience greater trauma. Also, just because a person may have lived experience does not mean they have the expertise or the strong desire to single-handedly diagnose and dismantle systemic barriers in the workplace.
In order for DEI work to be successful, it needs to be integrated throughout the organization. All areas in the organization need to be responsible and held accountable to advancing it. It needs to be “baked in” and become part of the organizational culture.
Integrating DEI practices in your daily work will result in a myriad of benefits, including all the benefits commonly cited in the business case.
Contact Canadian Equality Consulting today to assist with this.