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Diversity Paper.

1124 words - 4 pages

Introduction.Diversity refers to the presence of individual human characteristics that make people different from one another (Schermerhorn, Hunt, and Osborn, 2005). Some of these individual human characteristics are demographic differences, such as age, gender, sexual-orientation, race, ethnicity, and religion. Diversity and demographic differences can impact individual behavior by creating discrimination, stereotypes and prejudices in the workplace. In my opinion the differences that impact individual behavior the most are age, gender, sexual-orientation, race, and ethnicity.Age DifferencesPeople's ages in the workplace can range from young as 16 to as old as one would like to work. This range of age differences can create discrimination, stereotypes and prejudices among individuals. Stereotypes and prejudices come from the misperception that as people age their skills and thought processes deteriorates and they are unable to complete their work as effectively and efficiently as some of the younger workers.According to the United States' government site for equal opportunity, (http://www.eeoc.gov/types/age.html) setting age limits for employment has become common practice among employers. People over the age of 40 years are at the highest risk of age discrimination, but people of all ages can be victims of age discrimination. The government has enacted several bills which were created to discourage and even outlaw age discrimination. In 1967, Congress created the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, protecting individuals over 40 years old against age discrimination. This act protects both employees and job applicants. Under the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, "it is unlawful to discriminate against a person because of his/her age, with respect to any term, condition, or privilege of employment including, but not limited to hiring, firing, promotion, layoff, compensation, benefits, job assignments, and training" (ADEA, 1967).Two other acts that protect individuals from age discrimination are the Age Discrimination Act of 1975 and Section 188 of the Workforce Investment Act of 1998. The Age Discrimination Act protects individuals of all ages from discrimination when applying for programs and activities that receive federal financial assistance, and the Workforce Investment Act protects against age discrimination to individuals applying for Title I-financially assisted programs and activities, and programs that are part of the One-Stop system.Gender DifferencesLike differences in ages, gender differences also impact individual behavior by creating discrimination and stereotypes. For the most part the limitations are set for women. The stereotypical woman works at home, taking care of the children, cleaning house, and cooking meals. Even though that stereotype has changed over the years the perception still holds true and the modern woman still faces discrimination. Like other demographic differences, gender can affect promotions,...

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