Harper govt. attacks employment equity and affirmative action

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writer writer's picture

1) Are we eradicating face-to-face interviews?

2) Please define the scope of this anonymizer. What are the types of signals that would be searched and eradicated?

3) What does this mean? You are dreaming this scenario up. You provide some kind of paramater / definition.

 

I'll state again that you have the wrong discussion board if you hope for a discussion about whether employment equity – in the current, specific, real, context we now live in – is a good thing.

ygtbk

gadar wrote:

ygtbk wrote:

So everyone here (including me) agrees that discrimination is bad. How about the following:

1) Race and sex (and probably some other characteristics) are prohibited, by statute, as grounds for hiring and promotion decisions, and employers and employment agencies are forbidden to even attempt to find these things out.

2) Resumes go through an anonymizer to weed out attempts to signal these things.

3) Enforcement is as tough as you can dream up.

Is this a good state of the world? Why or why not? 

Inspite of all that do you honestly believe that racism and sexism does not happen at the time of hiring. According to the stats quoted in this thread it is quite evident. Seems like you sincerely believe that white TABs (thanks writer) are generally better candidates for employment than others.

You're not addressing my point at all. I am not claiming that the world is perfect as is: I'm describing an alternate state of affairs that I think would be better, and asking for your comments on it.

writer writer's picture

I'll repeat:

1) Are we eradicating face-to-face interviews?

2) Please define the scope of this anonymizer. What are the types of signals that would be searched and eradicated?

3) What does this mean? You are dreaming this scenario up. You provide some kind of paramater / definition.

 

I'll state again that you have the wrong discussion board if you hope for a discussion about whether employment equity – in the current, specific, real, context we now live in – is a good thing.

ygtbk

writer wrote:

I'll repeat:

1) Are we eradicating face-to-face interviews?

2) Please define the scope of this anonymizer. What are the types of signals that would be searched and eradicated?

3) What does this mean? You are dreaming this scenario up. You provide some kind of paramater / definition.

 

I'll state again that you have the wrong discussion board if you hope for a discussion about whether employment equity – in the current, specific, real, context we now live in – is a good thing.

1) Yes, unless some third-party interviewer could be trusted not to spill the beans.

2) At the very least, the person's name, and any hobbies that implied specific cultural background or physical abilities.

3) Something more than a slap on the wrist, obviously. A fine equal to a year's salary for the position might be a good start. I was asking for participation.

For what it's worth, at least one profession that I know of has a fairly rigourous examination process, and the people who mark the examinations do not know who the candidate is - the marker only knows the candidate number. It's a miniature version of the anonymizer that I was outlining, and it seems to work relatively well.

VanGoghs Ear

ygtbk

You're missing the point  -  What writer and others want is not a colourblind hiring system but a hring system that favours people of certain skin colours over others.  People have been taught for at least the last 40 years that discrimination based on skin colour is wrong and this causes the anger/resentment as much/probably more than any racist feelings.

 

I'm not referring to the woman in the story in the opening post who seems to have political connections to the Cons.

VanGoghs Ear

Before I'm jumped on - I acknowledge that racism has played a part in keeping people of colour out of good jobs - I'm saying that - the reaction that some people have to discriminatory hiring practices is not always because of racism but usually about a percieved official unfairness.

 

Maysie Maysie's picture

Did anyone read the link I provided in post #34 that says exactly what Employment Equity is, and by default, what it isn't?

Van Gogh's Ear and ygbtk. It's never been about "discrimination based on skin colour" (which would include white folks). It's been about groups of people who have been (and still ARE) systemically excluded from all sorts of employment opportunities. This includes people identified by the federal government as visible minorities, among other groups.

And um, EE has been around for decades. If anyone here thinks it's unjust in some ways, there are places to take such complaints. babble isn't one of them.

If you don't get these basic FACTS, then you have no business contributing to this thread.

VanGoghs Ear

I'm sorry Writer for doing that

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

Besides for not understanding discrimination real well it seems some people also don't understand the nature of employment.  There are few jobs anywhere that are so specialized that one person will stand out as a person who could do a far superior job. Normally in any large employer they will have applications from hundreds of qualified hopefuls. So get rid of the "best" candidate BS because in real life that means the name dropping neighbours friend or someone who played for the same rugby team as you did etc. etc. Hiring decisions are subtle and often unconsciously discriminatory.  You don't have to be a racist to look at people's backgrounds and find that the ones most like you are the "best" out of group of qualified people.   The only way around that is to say if there are a group of people who all seem to have the ability to get the job done well then it goes to the part of society that is underrepresented.  After all that is only fair.  When we get to the point that our federal civil service is not obviously tilted towards one privileged group I'd love to talk about the next step.

writer writer's picture

Quote:

ygtbk

You're missing the point  -  What writer and others want is not a colourblind hiring system but a hring system that favours people of certain skin colours over others.  People have been taught for at least the last 40 years that discrimination based on skin colour is wrong and this causes the anger/resentment as much/probably more than any racist feelings.

 

I'm not referring to the woman in the story in the opening post who seems to have political connections to the Cons.

VanGoghs Ear: mindreading is bullshit. I have not asked you to represent my position, nor do you seem up to the task. Stop doing it. Now.

writer writer's picture

Quote:

Before I'm jumped on - I acknowledge that racism has played a part in keeping people of colour out of good jobs - I'm saying that - the reaction that some people have to discriminatory hiring practices is not always because of racism but usually about a percieved official unfairness.

What you wrote was a steaming pile, indicating what "writer and others" want. Don't interpret what I want. Ask, if I'm being unclear. Mindreading is very disrespectful.

"People have been taught for at least the last 40 years that discrimination based on skin colour is wrong and this causes the anger/resentment as much/probably more than any racist feelings."

What does this even mean? Same goes for the last sentence above.

Anyway, I'm not playing this little reactionary game.

Edited to add: Thanks, Maysie!

VanGoghs Ear

I guess I'm not understood, I'll stay out of this

"what does this even mean?"

It means - an employer taking into account the skin colour of a possible employee(positively or negatively) when hiring them seems wrong despite the fact that I understand the reason behind it.

 

ygtbk

Maysie wrote:

Did anyone read the link I provided in post #34 that says exactly what Employment Equity is, and by default, what it isn't?

Van Gogh's Ear and ygbtk. It's never been about "discrimination based on skin colour" (which would include white folks). It's been about groups of people who have been (and still ARE) systemically excluded from all sorts of employment opportunities. This includes people identified by the federal government as visible minorities, among other groups.

And um, EE has been around for decades. If anyone here thinks it's unjust in some ways, there are places to take such complaints. babble isn't one of them.

If you don't get these basic FACTS, then you have no business contributing to this thread.

Maysie, is it not worth your while to respond to what I actually wrote in post #49? I think it at least partially addresses the systemic exclusion issue that you raise.

Maysie Maysie's picture

ygbtk:

#1. There is a great lack of clarity by your use of the word "discrimination". This term is too often used inaccurately. I prefer the word "systemic racist" or "systemic sexist" hiring practices.

#2. I've been a manager in two different organizations, one of them unionized. Both had a staff team of less than 10 employees. Job descriptions included commitment to particular political and feminist ideologies and practices. This is a useless suggestion.

#3. I have no idea what this means. EE is no longer required for private sector employers. Public sector employers are ineffectively trained and don't enforce it in a consistent way. There isn't the cultural prerogative or prioritizing to make this a matter to be effectively staffed and enforced. Let it go. I have.

P.S. The four "designated groups" are "women, persons with disabilities, Aboriginal people, members of visible minorities". Of course, one can belong to more than one group.

P.P.S. The revolution hasn't happened yet. The white-collar jobs of white men are safe. Chillax. 

 

junebug

laine lowe wrote:

Holy crap. I lost a well thought out post that addressed junebug's concerns. What a piss off.

The short form is that nobody is forcing private businesses to hire minorities. We do not have any Affirmative Action policy in place (strict quotas). The civil service does practice Employment Equity but all that means is that if among a group of qualified applicants, should one or more have a minority status as self-identified, they have to be considered. It does not mean an automatic hire. I have never experienced any evidence of that while I worked there for five years. And I was on a hiring commitee.

The overall point is that these policies have nothing to do with legislating behaviours and more to do with redressing the human rights violations that have occured in the past. How anyone could condone a past status-quo that discriminated against PoC, Aboriginals, disabled persons and women is just beyond my comprehension.

 

I don't condone the racist policies of the past, but I also don't feel it does any good to dwell on them and allow it to paralyze hiring procedures far off into the distant future either.

I think it should all be as simple as...hire the right person for the job...based on qualifications...their ethnicity should play no part, period.

And even if the current policies on the books state that it's not an "automatic hire"...the fact that someone may get a leg up in terms of receiving consideration for a job, ahead of somebody else based on ethnic background, is troubling to say the least.

I feel like programs like Employment Equity come from an emotional place, or somehow are born out of post-racial guilt...and that's no way to run a country.

Bacchus

Ive worked for a few corporations where applicants have their names and some information stripped before it is sent to the dept looking for applicants.

 

Doesn't mean much because there are still face to face interviews but they were always with several people from a given dpeartment and written reviews of each applicant had to be submitted which indicated why a given applicant was not suitable.

Bacchus

I would add that IF there are 'progressive' people or POC involved in that process then it can work but if its a trio of old boys then its fundamentally useless

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

junebug wrote:

I don't condone the racist policies of the past, but I also don't feel it does any good to dwell on them and allow it to paralyze hiring procedures far off into the distant future either.

Isn't that so very nice of you do condemn injustice in the past while insisting it is okay to continue it into the future. You don't get i!!!

The system is discriminatory now as it was in the past and we don't want it to be in the future.  The point you don't get is your supposed "fair" system has led to the discrimination. That is the systemic nature of the discrimination.  No one says we are hiring the guy because he is white. Everyone hires the "best possibly candidate from a pool of suitable candidates." If the white guy wins most of the time then the rules need to be changed to stop the rigged game.  Did you read the current numbers? I find them reprehensible what about you?

junebug

writer wrote:

How was slavery formally ended? How did women finally get the vote? When did status Indians get to vote? How are rules for the road established?

We are constantly legislating behaviour and rights.

As for the "best person" argument - it is truly tiresome, and is not appropriate on this site. Because, uh, funnily enough, the best person has disproportionately ended up being straight white TAB guys for quite a long time. And still to this day! Look at the make up of "our government" sitting in Parliament. Hardly representative, and hardly the most qualified.

I think the only right that really counts is the right to be left alone.

Slavery hasn't been formally ended...it's just morphed into a less violent, more palatable form.  It doesn't take a government to just up and decide when women get to vote...people rise up and take that right for themselves.  Freedom isn't granted, it is taken.

As for the rules of the road, I think we could do away with a lot of them.  Allow people to drive however they'd like, and use the rule of law to punish those who drive in a manner that infringes on another person's ability to drive however they'd like.

Why is the "best person argument" not appropriate for this site?  I agree that in the past it's been the straight white guys who've dominated the work-force, but I don't think it's something you dwell on...you acknowledge the mistakes of the past, and you move on...vowing to hire the most qualified individual...regardless of their ethnic make-up.  If it's a straight white guy so be it...if it's someone of another race, gender and/or sexual orientation...so be it.

And what about our government sitting in Parliament?  The "most qualified" argument is really a moot point since no matter who gets elected, someone out there will have a beef, and say that so-and-so is not the most qualified for their particular seat or portfolio.  As for the ethnic makeup of our Parliament...I have no idea if it truly represents the diversity of our country...but in case you may be living in and around southern Ontario, lower mainland BC or greater Montreal - a fairly sizable portion of our country is rural and predominantly white.

junebug

kropotkin1951 wrote:

junebug wrote:

I don't condone the racist policies of the past, but I also don't feel it does any good to dwell on them and allow it to paralyze hiring procedures far off into the distant future either.

Isn't that so very nice of you do condemn injustice in the past while insisting it is okay to continue it into the future. You don't get i!!!

The system is discriminatory now as it was in the past and we don't want it to be in the future.  The point you don't get is your supposed "fair" system has led to the discrimination. That is the systemic nature of the discrimination.  No one says we are hiring the guy because he is white. Everyone hires the "best possibly candidate from a pool of suitable candidates." If the white guy wins most of the time then the rules need to be changed to stop the rigged game.  Did you read the current numbers? I find them reprehensible what about you?

If the problem then stems from white guys being the most qualified due to systemic causes i.e. better access to higher education, more affluent backgrounds - don't you think using a program like Employment Equity is a reactive, and backwards way of addressing those systemic problems?  Why not tackle the source(s) instead of stop-gap measures introduced at the end of the chain?

The idea of government using a program like Employment Equity to balance an imbalance it caused in the first place is only more evidence of how ridiculous this country is, in terms of how we run our society.

writer writer's picture

Have you read Maysie's link regarding employment equity?

Sorry, I'd rather get my head drilled without any painkiller than to talk about why we don't debate about whether employment equity is one of the baselines for a progressive site with someone who clearly doesn't get it. You want to hash it out from a point of ignorance, bias and bad information, go somewhere else.

Maysie Maysie's picture

junebug. Unfortunately, we are not here to go over first principles with you. Employment Equity, as I've stated a few times in this thread, has been active for several decades. If you're read the link, that I've now posted TWICE, you would know what it has tried to rectify (without a lot of success, but my critique is from the far left and this thread is not the place for it).

Much thanks and hugs to writer, kropotkin and others who have been patient and have flagged the various posts for the mods' attention. But enough is enough.

It's systemic preference that has the white guys in all the plum jobs. Full stop. EE is a highly flawed, but corrective teensy system, to fix that.

You need to stay out of this thread from now on. This is not a suggestion. If you have any questions feel free to email me at maysie(at)rabble(dot)ca

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

junebug wrote:

If the problem then stems from white guys being the most qualified due to systemic causes i.e. better access to higher education, more affluent backgrounds - don't you think using a program like Employment Equity is a reactive, and backwards way of addressing those systemic problems?  

The problem is the white guys are not the fucking most qualified and they get most of the jobs. The systemic thing is that other white guys think they are the best man for the job and they get hired. 

I'm with you Writer if one can't understand the basics then they are either not listening or they have come to debate the core principles that define the site. 

shrug

I have always been pro- Employment Equity/Affirmative Action, but increasingly I am becoming uncomfortable with a system that acknowledges only some forms of discrimination, but not others.  A person may be white and able-bodied, but may also be from a poverty-stricken background, gay, and have a learning disability he does not wish to disclose due to the stigma against this.  Visibly, he would appear to have all advantages, and no reasons for not succeeding.  But he may still be as much of a victim of discrimination as a person from an ethnic minority who has benefited from a prosperous upbringing, is more 'traditional' in their 'lifestyle' (i.e. is straight), and does not have a learning disability.  The issue of discrimination is a lot more complicated than we acknowledge when only looking at race and visible forms of disability, and we need to be careful not to pretend that class/gender/sexuality/non-visible disabilities are not relevant.

Maysie Maysie's picture

Hi shrug. Welcome to babble.

Did you read my link to the actual Employment Equity Act in post #58 and #64?

The "issue" of general discrimination is NOT at the heart and core of the EE Act. Please read the link. I agree that the four designated groups chosen (that I listed in post #64) certainly do not represent all the ways in which people are marginalized. This is one of my critiques of EE.

However.

Discrimination against people who are marginalized by gender (ie women), race (ie people of colour and Aboriginal people) and ability (people with "obvious" physical disabilities as well as those with so-called "invisible" disabilities), however, is huge. Racism, sexism and ableism are extremely marginalizing, not only in employment but throughout many/all of our systems and institutions, as well as individual behaviours. This is a first principle of babble. This is not to set up an "oppression olympics" but merely to suggest that these particular areas were chosen for good reasons. 

But given the tenor of this thread, and the fight to maintain the basic core principles of babble, I'm going to give you the benefit of the doubt for now. I don't think your advanced critique is going to fly. Also, being so new, we have no idea if you're a troll or not. I hope you understand.

 

 

mybabble

And the discrimination doesn't stop there especially when female MP can't get an audience with Harper, as can't think of it every happening to a man.  I know Harper made it pretty clear than he wouldn't waste his time with any woman's group and it looks like he sticks with that one all across the board.

shrug

Maysie - It looks like you've given me a slap on the wrist in my first post, though generously giving me "the benefit of the doubt" --??  The benefit of the doubt for what??  I did not write anything offensive -- as you acknowledged, I merely expressed something that you wrote was the basis of your own critique of EE.  Your "I don't think your advanced critique is going to fly" comment has no substance or argument to it. I understand very well that 'the "issue" of general discrimination is NOT at the heart and core of the EE Act' -- that is my criticism. I agree that "these particular areas [ie race, gender and visible disability] were chosen for good reasons"; however, I think it may be time to progress into acknowledgement that these are not the only forms of discrimination, and to see if it's possible to develop more inclusive anti-discrimination policy. Far from being a reactionary comment (and certainly not supporting the Harper government in any way), my comment is a call for more progressive reforms to EE. As it stands, it is flawed for the reasons I expressed.

Meanwhile, when compared with my comment, I find it shocking that comment #29 (from remind) received no reprimand, although he/she was belittling another commenter for the possible crime of not being Canadian! This kind of xenophobia is surely not part of the 'basic core principles of Babble' you say you are trying to uphold.

mahmud

shrug wrote:

Meanwhile, when compared with my comment, I find it shocking that comment #29 (from remind) received no reprimand, although he/she was belittling another commenter for the possible crime of not being Canadian! This kind of xenophobia is surely not part of the 'basic core principles of Babble' you say you are trying to uphold.

You joined Babble yesterday (welcome, nevertheless)  and you are accusing remind of (belittling and) xenophobia?  Don't you think that you have plunged too early and hurt the neck of your credibility?

shrug

Mahmud - I think I am allowed to have an opinion whether I joined yesterday or five years ago.  Could you not judge my comment by its content rather than by my newbie status?

Catchfire Catchfire's picture

Hi shrug, it's not xenophobic to point out that "Affirmitive Action" in the American context has a much different tenor than in the Canadian context. I'm not sure spelling "color" without a U is enough to condemn anyone, but it's not worth a moderator's intervention. Besides, we know remind's politics.

As you can see, this thread has been a magnet for new posters writing ignorant nonsense againt the mandate of babble. I think Maysie was just offering a friendly caution to remind you of babble's policy. I accept your criticism, although in the context of the thread and the trolls who have joined in, it is easy to see how one could be wary of a new poster offering such a post at such a time.

Regardless, I agree in spirit with your critique of EE. I look forward to reading more of the same.

Oh, and welcome to babble.

shrug

Thanks Catchfire.  I agree that pointing out the difference between American 'AA' and Canadian 'EE' is not xenophobic, but that is not what I read in Remind's comments.  Being new, I do not know Remind's politics, so perhaps I am not able to read between the lines as you are.  From just reading what was written, and the repeated accusations that Sentinel73 was not Canadian (so what if he/she isn't? ... and I know many Canadians and non-Canadians who spell color without the u, and are not evil), it seemed like belittling and xenophobia to me -- a bit of a non-Canadian witchhunt.

As for this thread being full of ignorant nonsense... I think the thread would be rather dull if only people who agreed with each other contributed.  As long as nothing hateful is written, I see no problem with some healthy debate.  Unless I've missed something (I must admit I haven't read every post carefully and in full)....

Sentinel73

mahmud wrote:

Sentinel73 wrote:
 

If the job description said at the bottom..."open to whites...", what would be your reaction then?

When a white person, male or female, has their resume purposely overlooked or disregarded because of their color, it is racism just like it would be for someone else. If one is to say that every Canadian has the right to apply or work within the public service(or any job), then telling a white person they cannot apply because of their color, then every Canadian is not having that right are they?

I do not understand Canadians who do not see it this way.

In your first scenario, it is racism.

In your second scenario, no it is not racism and it is not discrimination. It is redress, remedy to an established and proven societal phenomena of racism and discrimination. 

 

Ah I see, your answer to remedy discrimination and racism is to have more discrimination and racism. You just shift it onto another group.

Sentinel73

remind wrote:

Sentinel73 wrote:
When a white person, male or female, has their resume purposely overlooked or disregarded because of their color,

You have spelled 'colour' wrong, and this is not a spelling flame it is an indication of American post scripting.

Quote:
it is racism just like it would be for someone else.

No actually it is not.

Quote:
If one is to say that every Canadian has the right to apply or work within the public service(or any job), then telling a white person they cannot apply because of their color, then every Canadian is not having that right are they?

This is so mind boggling deficient in analysis, I am not even going to say anything other than; you again spelled colour wrong. Eve

Quote:
I do not understand Canadians who do not see it this way.

 

Again indicative that perhaps you are NOT Canadian.

Quote:
Do not take me wrong, I believe everyone deserves a fair chance and I believe that there should be equal representation.

Racist white Canadians make sure that there is NOT equal representation.

Quote:
 Who would ever think in their own country, and that could be someone of a different race then me, could be told they don't qualify because of their color?

x3 on spelling colour wrong, one would think at least once you would have spelled it correctly if Canadian. Also, that you think Canada belongs to white males is an issue.

Quote:
Social engineering affirmative action quotas are racist. Employ people for their talent and education. I'm sure employers can have some kind...instead of mass social racist BS.

Not they are not racist.

We already have mass social sexist and racist BS, we do not need to encourage it further by not insisting on equity hiring.

 

No, I don't think Canada belongs to white males. I used the term white male simply because I am one and the issue at hand has to due with anyone not being a "minority", being white that is, can be refused a job based on their skin tone. If Sara Landriault was black and refused a job in the same way, I would also be saying it is racism.

It's plain and simple, you refuse to hire someone, you blocked their resume etc..whether because they are white, black, Chinese or whatever...it is racism.

As for me being Canadian, well I am. Never thought I would have to explain who I am on here, but since it bothers you so much of a way I spell a word I shall let you know....born Newfoundlander with a long family history on the island like many others. Well, seeing your so technical on things, maybe in your opinion not a "real" Canadian like you since we only joined in 1949.

Maysie Maysie's picture

Sentinel wrote:

No, I don't think Canada belongs to white males. I used the term white male simply because I am one and the issue at hand has to due with anyone not being a "minority", being white that is, can be refused a job based on their skin tone. If Sara Landriault was black and refused a job in the same way, I would also be saying it is racism.

I'm really getting tired of telling people to read the ACTUAL EMPLOYMENT EQUITY ACT that I've posted twice in this thread already. But Sentinel, go read it.

Quote:

It's plain and simple, you refuse to hire someone, you blocked their resume etc..whether because they are white, black, Chinese or whatever...it is racism.

No. It's. Not.

White people are not, NOT, NOT victims of racism if an equally qualified person from one of the designated Employment Equity groups is hired instead of them. And two of the designated groups are inclusive of white people, by the way. 

Anti-Racism Anti-Oppression 101. Please read the links.

..............

So.

After some consideration, and given the amount of racist content this thread has attracted since it was opened, I'm closing it.

This is first principles stuff, people (you know who you are). 

Catchfire Catchfire's picture

Ok, here's what we're going to do.

Sentinel73, you are no longer permitted to post in this thread. If you do, you will be suspended. This thread is not going to be derailed by someone concerned about the increasing immiseration of white able-bodied men everywhere. To paraphrase my colleague Maysie: our jobs are safe. Chillax.

Anyone else who wishes to take this thread off-topic with further waxings about the plight of our best and brightest will be invited to take a similar hike. This discussion will continue in the spirit of babble's mandate: that is, from an anti-racist, feminist, pro-labour and anti-ableist mindset. Cool?

shrug

Although I disagree with Sentinel, I am very surprised that Babble thinks he has crossed a line with his comments.  I find it depressing that this forum does not allow more freedom of debate.  If just having a differing opinion is offensive, it seems to undermine the whole purpose of having a discussion forum.  Again - unless I missed something, Sentinel did not write anything abusive or anywhere close to outrageous.  He simply doesn't agree with EE, and was expressing that.  If this is a forum that is only about preaching to the converted, what is the purpose of it?  Are we so weak in our arguments that we have to ban people who oppose us?

I agree that Sentinel's argument and definition of racism is simplistic and somewhat ignorant, but I don't think that there has been a fair effort to communicate with him in a non-belligerent way.  "No. It's. Not" is not an competent argument, and I would expect a better editorial approach from such a respected news forum.  The reality is that many, many people agree with Sentinel's views - aren't they the very people we should be trying to reach?

Catchfire Catchfire's picture

shrug wrote:
unless I missed something

It appears you have missed something, shrug. To wit, the babble policy statement (linked to at the top of every page and which both you and Sentinel agreed to when registering for this site). It reads as follows:

Quote:
babble is NOT intended as a place where the basic and essential values of human rights, feminism, anti-racism, and labour rights are to be debated or refought. Members that join babble who indicate intentions to challenge these rights and principles may be seen as disruptive to the nature of the forum.

We're not here to discuss everything. We're here to discuss leftist topics from a leftist point of view, in the hopes of extending and enriching leftist thought. For those keeping score, that does not include protecting the privilege of white, able-bodied, heterosexual men (of which I am one). It's also not up for debate. If you want to debate such elementary first principles, feel free to head to CBC, the Globe and Mail, or the National Post, all of which, sadly, still like the look of the wrong side of history.

6079_Smith_W

Not sure if Maysie actually closed this or not (it seems not) but....

CBC's "The House" was on this morning, and while I wasn't actually paying attention, my ears did perk up when I heard "employment equity" mentioned during a discussion about the long form census. Actually it was a comment along the lines of "I don't want to answer questions that be used to hurt me" that made me pay attention. I didn't get the guy's name, but they did identify the three guests as regular Canadians, not pundits, and one was called a "libertarian", so my guess that was the boy.

Officially or through the grapevine, I guess they are cross-referencing these two agenda items now in order to try and scare people and shore up support for their census decision any way they can.

Unionist

Hey 6079, [url=http://www.cbc.ca/thehouse/2010/07/july-31-2010-1.html]here's the full audio of today's "The House"[/url]. The bit about the census is toward the end. Can you find the part you were talking about please?

 

6079_Smith_W

Unionist wrote:

Hey 6079, [url=http://www.cbc.ca/thehouse/2010/07/july-31-2010-1.html]here's the full audio of today's "The House"[/url]. The bit about the census is toward the end. Can you find the part you were talking about please?

Well if I have to..... but you realize that means I have to sit through a half hour of Michael Ignatieff. That's part of the reason I was hoping I could squeak through without a proper reference this time, but I guess not.

(edit) ah, good. I found the podcast. wait a sec...

The piece starts about 30 minutes in. The person is Jean Serge Bisson, and he is actually a member and candidate for the Libertarian Party. He also said the notion that there is a real penalty is a joke because he refused to answer it once and was not fined. They just asked him the short form over the phone.

Here it is, at 37 min... an almost direct quote:

"to what point might these questions I don't mind answering be used against me somewhere later on down the road, whether it's employment equity, because I am sure that is where some of the information is coming in for employment equity."

I don't know why they identified a candidate for a political party as a regular Canadian, though.

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

Gee I can't remember the last time they had a candidate for the Marxist party on the CBC. Libertarianism is the new buzz word for unfettered capitalism so it makes sense that the state media would have them on.  On the left we say no, no, lets not discuss anything further left than social democracy because the voters would be frightened. Meantime the state media provides an ultra free enterprise fringe party a podium.  I think I need to laugh to keep from crying.

Unionist

Thank you, 6079 - sorry to put you through that torture - and indeed I'm sorry I put myself through that small bit of torture as well!

 

Unionist

From Judy Rebick:

The following letter has been signed by several organizations and now they would also like individuals to sign. If you agree to sign send your name and association to Avvy Go [goa [AT] lao.on.ca]

Quote:
An Open Letter to the Right Honourable Stephen Harper:

Dear Prime Minister:

Re: Stop the Attack on Employment Equity

As Canadians who believe in a discrimination-free society, we are writing to express our grave concerns regarding recent comments made by the Hon. Stockwell Day, President of the Treasury Board, who insinuated that the Federal Employment Equity program is barring qualified Canadians from job opportunities in the federal public service.

We are equally dismayed by similar comments made by the Hon. Jason Kenney, Minister of Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism, who stated that all Canadians should have an equal opportunity to work for their government based on merit, regardless of race or ethnicity, as if to suggest that unmerited candidates from racialized communities are taking over the jobs of qualified white candidates, thanks to affirmative action.

The truth, as you are well aware, is the opposite. Employment equity guarantees merit-based hiring because it removes artificial barriers to employment. All too often, qualified candidates from racialized communities do not get hired because of their race or ethnicity.

The current legislative framework that supports employment in the federal public service is found in the Employment Equity Act, 1995, s. 15 (2) of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms and provincial human rights legislation and policies. The purpose of this framework is to ameliorate the historical and current marginalization of members of designated groups not only in hiring practices, but in promotion and retention practices as well.

Yet despite nearly 25 years since the Employment Equity Act was first put in place, there continues to be serious under-representation of workers from the Aboriginal communities, visible minorities, women, and people with disabilities in the federal public service, the single largest employer in Canada. In a recent report of the Standing Senate Committee on Human Rights, Reflecting the Changing Face of Canada: Employment Equity in the Federal Public Service, the Senate Committee examined issues of discrimination in the hiring practices of the federal public service and found that employment equity targets among the four designated groups were not fully being met, especially for visible minorities. Based on data available for the core public service in 2008-2009, visible minorities were represented at 9.8%, a figure that was much lower than their workforce availability rate at 15.3%.

The fact that discrimination persists despite governments’ best efforts should motivate our political leaders to redouble their resolve to advance policies and programs to make our workplace truly inclusive. That Minister’s Jason Kenney and Stockwell Day are now asking for a review of the Public Service Employment Act suggests either a lack of understanding of the purpose or the mechanics of the Employment Equity Act, or an attempt to divert attention away from the Government’s failure to deliver on its obligation to eradicate discrimination in employment.

Contrary to the Ministers’ assertion, employment equity has proven to be an effective measure to ensure candidates from marginalized groups get the jobs that they are qualified to do. It also promotes diversity in the workplace, something that most Canadians value. For these reasons, an increasing number of business leaders have embraced employment equity as the model for their corporations. In short, employment equity makes good business sense because it works.

Rather than perpetuating the myth about employment equity as replacing merit-based hiring, we need you to affirm your Government’s commitment to equity and diversity by strengthening employment equity measures, and by educating all Canadians the need for such programs.

Yours truly,

shrug

Catchfire wrote:

shrug wrote:
unless I missed something

It appears you have missed something, shrug. To wit, the babble policy statement (linked to at the top of every page and which both you and Sentinel agreed to when registering for this site). It reads as follows:

Quote:
babble is NOT intended as a place where the basic and essential values of human rights, feminism, anti-racism, and labour rights are to be debated or refought. Members that join babble who indicate intentions to challenge these rights and principles may be seen as disruptive to the nature of the forum.

Let me get this straight - are you accusing me of going against any of the above?  Have I questioned human rights, feminism, anti-racism or labour rights, or challenged these rights in any way?  If you are saying that I have done, it is quite an accusation to make, and cannot be substantiated.  As you do not know anything about me or my profession, I suggest that you should choose your words more carefully.  I agree whole-heartedly with Babble's policy; what I do not agree with is the over-zealous execution of this policy, which seems to me bullying and knee-jerk in its condemnation of people with differing views.  I shudder to think of all the left-leaning contributors (but not left-leaning enough for Babble's definition) who have been kicked off of this forum, and were left feeling that leftist ideology is exclusive and afraid of dissenting views.  It should be anything but.

Catchfire - "We're not here to discuss everything. We're here to discuss leftist topics from a leftist point of view, in the hopes of extending and enriching leftist thought. For those keeping score, that does not include protecting the privilege of white, able-bodied, heterosexual men (of which I am one)."

Well, I am NOT a white, able-bodied heterosexual man, and I have NOT been defending the rights of white, able-bodied heterosexual men.  It seems strange that you, as a white, able-bodied heterosexual man, seem to feel that you should be the spokesperson for all oppressed groups.  You do not represent me, and Babble does not represent all leftist thought - you represent a very rigid version of leftist thought, which silences minority voices (and I'm not talking about Sentinel's more mainstream, hegemonic views - I'm talking about my own, which is most certainly leftist, but is feeling oddly threatened and bullied in this forum).

Catchfire - "It's also not up for debate. If you want to debate such elementary first principles, feel free to head to CBC, the Globe and Mail, or the National Post, all of which, sadly, still like the look of the wrong side of history."

This is incredibly elitist, condescending and patronizing.  I joined Babble in the hope of being able to interact with people who might approach online debate in a more progressive and informed way than the above news sources.  Perhaps I should stick to The Guardian.  It's a shame that such an open forum is not available in Canada.  The Guardian also has a strict policy to ensure that commentators do not spout hate (this is right and just), but otherwise it does not confine people to a ridiculously small ideological framework that disallows any real debate.

I am truly disappointed by Babble's fear of differing points of view - all in the name of diversity and acceptance, you say?  What a joke.

Unionist

[drift] Shrug, discussions of babble policy or moderation belong in [url=http://rabble.ca/babble/rabble-content/rabble-reactions]rabble reactions[/url]. That way, the thread doesn't get derailed, inadvertently or otherwise, and the mods don't have to close it as they already did once. [/end drift]

Has there been any reaction from the so-called "opposition" parties to this trial balloon, or are they on summer holidays?

 

shrug

Unionist wrote:

[drift] Shrug, discussions of babble policy or moderation belong in [url=http://rabble.ca/babble/rabble-content/rabble-reactions]rabble reactions[/url]. That way, the thread doesn't get derailed, inadvertently or otherwise, and the mods don't have to close it as they already did once. [/end drift]

Thanks, Unionist - I don't mean to derail the thread, and have copied my last post to Rabble Reactions.

Since1645

I am a white woman and I moved to ottawa 5+ years ago. I only speak English. I am college edcuated and held great jobs most of my life.

 

I worked in my field for 1 year in the private sector. That type of work is now automated. I also worked at two government departments as a contractor. The agencies do not rehire you, the longest they will keep you is 3 months so no E.I. will be paid to you and new people will replace the previous batch of people. I had another chance to work in the same office but I had to re-apply, there were 4 jobs, 3 were bilingual, 1 was english. The english job had 700 applicants so I did not bother, also the wage was 11 an hour. I have sent over 2000 resumes in the past 3 years (I have not found any work in ottawa in 3 years). It is true that if you are white and not bilingual you cannot apply in the government. I also applied in the universities but they do not hire whites who are english either. As soon as they find out you are white, they make the job bilingual. This happened to me when I applied to a job at Carleton that I have experience in (as I worked at UBC a few years ago). It is either you have to be from quebec and speak french as your first language or a minority. Its much worse for me now than 10 years ago in this regard. 

I had to leave my home province more than once as the economy is desperate there. I have lost two jobs in my years of work because I do not speak french. Another time I lost a job and had to leave that city because they laid off the local women and brought in students from china who were millionaires daughters to work at Hallmark. I also lost a job years ago in toronto as the employer was told if they hired two black women from the islands they would get 10,000 for each one they hired, so myself and another worker had to leave that job in the private sectory. 

 

The most discriminated group now are white male and females who are english.

Since1645

I am a white woman and I moved to ottawa 5+ years ago. I only speak English. I am college edcuated and held great jobs most of my life.

 

I worked in my field for 1 year in the private sector. That type of work is now automated. I also worked at two government departments as a contractor. The agencies do not rehire you, the longest they will keep you is 3 months so no E.I. will be paid to you and new people will replace the previous batch of people. I had another chance to work in the same office but I had to re-apply, there were 4 jobs, 3 were bilingual, 1 was english. The english job had 700 applicants so I did not bother, also the wage was 11 an hour. I have sent over 2000 resumes in the past 3 years (I have not found any work in ottawa in 3 years). It is true that if you are white and not bilingual you cannot apply in the government. I also applied in the universities but they do not hire whites who are english either. As soon as they find out you are white, they make the job bilingual. This happened to me when I applied to a job at Carleton that I have experience in (as I worked at UBC a few years ago). It is either you have to be from quebec and speak french as your first language or a minority. Its much worse for me now than 10 years ago in this regard. 

I had to leave my home province more than once as the economy is desperate there. I have lost two jobs in my years of work because I do not speak french. Another time I lost a job and had to leave that city because they laid off the local women and brought in students from china who were millionaires daughters to work at Hallmark. I also lost a job years ago in toronto as the employer was told if they hired two black women from the islands they would get 10,000 for each one they hired, so myself and another worker had to leave that job in the private sectory. 

 

The most discriminated group now are white male and females who are english.

Unionist

You could maybe apply for a job as poster child for reverse racism?

 

Summer

I know a bunch of uniligual white men and women who work for the federal government.  So Since1645- I think there must be another reason for your struggles.  Perhaps you should update your skills.  

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