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Equity in the workplace

How to measure equity in the workplace?

This is a question we asked ourselves when we saw the increasing number of demonstrations against racism and discriminations around the world, and that many companies, which usually did not speak on the subject, decided to speak out to condemn them. In addition, many racialized employees are denouncing the prevailing racism they experience at work. Racial equity has therefore become a top priority and employees no longer want simple statements, but concrete actions.

Despite multiple efforts to make workplaces more inclusive and equitable, so far no measurement system was put in place. This comes as a surprise because, without a monitoring and evaluation system, how can Governments or corporations consider themselves equitable or claim to have achieved their objectives in terms of equity?

In the United States, initiatives like REJI (Racial Equity & Justice Initiative) have been implemented to make racial equity in the workplace a priority, to share numerous resources with racialized employees and provide them with one-on-one support. As we conducted our research, we realized that we were lacking initiatives like REJI in Canada. You can find more information on the REJI initiative here.

The establishment of an evaluation system to measure equity in the workplace in Canada would allow to:
+ Measure strategic and operational objectives in terms of diversity and inclusion
+ Understand and respond to the expectations and needs of racialized employees
+ Collaborate with anti-racism organizations to educate employees
+ Correct one’s system to promote diversity and inclusion
+ Develop an anti-racism culture in the workplace

Although steps have been taken to foster diversity and inclusion in the workplace, especially in large corporations, no concrete evaluation system to measure racial equity in Canada has been set up.
We therefore recommend the creation of a working committee, with the support of the Federal Government, to set up a system to evaluate racial equity in the workplace and to define performance indicators that would allow us to measure the effectiveness of the actions taken by businesses.
However, before implementing such a rating system, we should make sure that each company genuinely wants to become a better advocate for racial equity.

This article is part of the campaign Systemic Participation. Funded by Heritage Canada :

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