Twenty-nine percent of Hispanic workers have experienced discrimination or unfair treatment in the workplace, according to a nationwide survey by CareerBuilder.com and Kelly Services, conducted by Harris Interactive. Of those who reported the discrimination or unfair treatment to their employers, 77 percent said the offender was not held accountable.
The study, "Diversity in the Workplace," was designed to gauge the frequency, severity and occasion for perceptions of discrimination or unfair treatment and how diversity impacts hiring, compensation and career advancement. It focused on seven diverse segments including Asians, African Americans, Hispanics, workers with disabilities, women, mature workers age 50 or older and Gay/Lesbian/Bisexual/Transgender workers.
"Hispanic workers are among the fastest growing segments of the U.S. labor force," said Jesse Caballero, Senior Career Advisor for empleosCB.com, a subsidiary of CareerBuilder.com focused on online job search for the Hispanic community. "They are also among the two groups reporting the highest levels of severe discrimination in the workplace. Fifteen percent said they have been addressed with a racial slur at work. Roughly one-in-four feel they are paid less and have fewer career advancement opportunities compared to their Caucasian counterparts."
Severity and Frequency of Discrimination or Unfair Treatment in the Workplace
Of the segments surveyed, Hispanic workers were among the most likely to categorize the discrimination or unfair treatment as severe at 26 percent. Twenty-nine percent of Hispanic workers said they experience discrimination or unfair treatment at least once a week. Eighteen percent said once a month and 31 percent say it happens occasionally (defined as one to three times per year).
Discriminating or Unfair Behaviors The most common incidents of discrimination or unfair treatment involved: * Not receiving credit for one's work (53 percent) * Co-workers were talking behind their backs (41 percent) * Did not receive a raise or bonus (38 percent) * Not having concerns addressed or taken seriously (37 percent) * Feeling ideas or input are generally ignored (34 percent) * Being overlooked for a promotion (32 percent) Pay and Career Advancement
Twenty-two percent of Hispanic workers feel they are paid less than Caucasian co-workers who have the same skills and experience; 6 percent feel they are paid more; and 58 percent feel they are paid the same.
When asked about career advancement, 27 percent of Hispanic workers feel they have less opportunities compared to Caucasian co-workers who have the same skills and experiences; 3 percent feel they have more and 57 percent feel it's the same.
Reporting of Discrimination or Unfair Treatment
Unfortunately, much of the discrimination or unfair treatment goes unaddressed. Fifty-five percent of Hispanic workers who experienced discrimination or unfair treatment said they did not report the incident. Sixty percent of Hispanic workers said they didn't think reporting the incident would make a difference while 33 percent feared being labeled as a trouble-maker and 17 percent feared losing their jobs.
The majority of Hispanic workers who reported discrimination or unfair treatment did so by bringing it to the attention of their direct supervisor (24 percent). Another 22 percent reported it to someone in senior management while 13 percent reported it to Human Resources. The majority of workers who reported the incident (65 percent) said they didn't think their claim was taken seriously and, in 77 percent of the cases, the offender was not held accountable. Twelve percent of Hispanic workers took legal action against their employer, the highest of all diverse groups surveyed.
"Creating and enforcing a healthy, balanced, diverse work culture starts at the top. This study reinforces the relative scarcity of diverse workers in management in most organizations," said Nina Ramsey, senior vice president of Human Resources at Kelly Services. "We can hope that the environment for Hispanics and other diverse workers will steadily improve as hiring, leadership development and succession practices evolve and include workers of all backgrounds."
Diversity and Hiring
Hispanic workers are among the most likely of diverse workers to say their diverse background works in their favor when applying for a job at 18 percent. Thirty-one percent said their diverse background works against them while 51 percent said it has no influence.
In terms of involuntary termination, 12 percent of Hispanic workers said they believed they had been fired at some point in their career based on their diverse background.
Twenty-one percent of all workers -- both diverse and non-diverse -- said they have witnessed discrimination or unfair treatment of a co-worker based on their diverse background.
This survey was conducted online by Harris Interactive on behalf of CareerBuilder.com and Kelly Services among 953 Workers (age 18+ within the United States, employed full-time or part-time) with 150 being Hispanic workers (age 18+ within the United States, employed full-time or part-time) between March 15 and March 21, 2007. Figures for age, sex, race/ethnicity, education, region and household income were weighted where necessary to bring them into line with their actual proportions in the population. Propensity score weighting was also used to adjust for respondents' propensity to be online.
With a pure probability sample of 953 one could say with a ninety-five percent probability that the overall results have a sampling error of +/- 3.2 percentage points. With a pure probability sample of 150 one could say with a ninety-five percent probability that the overall results have a sampling error of +/- 8 percentage. Sampling error for data from subsamples is higher and varies. However that does not take other sources of error into account. This online survey is not based on a probability sample and therefore no theoretical sampling error can be calculated.
About Kelly Services
Kelly Services, Inc.
CareerBuilder.com is the nation's largest online job site with more than 21 million unique visitors and over 1.5 million jobs. Owned by Gannett Co., Inc.
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