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Your Two Cents: Have You Felt Discriminated Against at Work?

Discrimination can have many ugly faces; whether it's deliberate or unintentional it never feels good when you've been unfairly treated. On Sunday's episode of Mad Men, Peggy Olsen finally got the office she deserves — one that doesn't double as the copy room. She made the change happen by standing up for herself and believing that her contributions were enough to warrant her own office, even if she was (gasp!) a woman.

Photo courtesy of AMC

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cheekyredhead cheekyredhead 6 years
I didn't feel discriminated against until I found out men where getting paid drastically more. Same and sometimes I had even more experience but STILL they would get paid more. When I approached a Dr (my boss) and told him this was wrong his excuse was "But HE is the person supporting a whole family" to which I said "So am I. Why is it okay for a single mom to get paid less for doing more work?" He sat there speechless but did nothing. The next weekend was our company picnic and his wife came and sat with me and we chatted. I told her about it and asked her how she felt about that policy. She was also a Dr in the same firm. My next paycheck was drastically more and I wrote her a thank you note. I know I risked a lot WAY back then to stand up and say something but my job was in such a demand that I had headhunters calling me weekly trying to lure me away. If they had not been fair I would simply have left. Every job after that I was vocal about pay and fairness. Fortunately in my field we were in such demand that they saw fairness to be a better option than to be blacklisted by our professional connections. Now it is different. Every-one's pay has been frozen for 7 years. I have worked with physicians who treated me like an idiot because I was a woman--and not a DR. Those physicians never kept anyone on staff for over a year. Now I ask receptionists, nurses, and anyone who will answer me how they like working at XYZ before I take a job. You'd be surprised how much information you can get handing out free donuts in the parking lot. I don't see this any different than when employers check our backgrounds and references.
cheekyredhead cheekyredhead 6 years
I didn't feel discriminated against until I found out men where getting paid drastically more. Same and sometimes I had even more experience but STILL they would get paid more. When I approached a Dr (my boss) and told him this was wrong his excuse was "But HE is the person supporting a whole family" to which I said "So am I. Why is it okay for a single mom to get paid less for doing more work?" He sat there speechless but did nothing.The next weekend was our company picnic and his wife came and sat with me and we chatted. I told her about it and asked her how she felt about that policy. She was also a Dr in the same firm. My next paycheck was drastically more and I wrote her a thank you note.I know I risked a lot WAY back then to stand up and say something but my job was in such a demand that I had headhunters calling me weekly trying to lure me away. If they had not been fair I would simply have left. Every job after that I was vocal about pay and fairness. Fortunately in my field we were in such demand that they saw fairness to be a better option than to be blacklisted by our professional connections. Now it is different. Every-one's pay has been frozen for 7 years. I have worked with physicians who treated me like an idiot because I was a woman--and not a DR. Those physicians never kept anyone on staff for over a year. Now I ask receptionists, nurses, and anyone who will answer me how they like working at XYZ before I take a job. You'd be surprised how much information you can get handing out free donuts in the parking lot. I don't see this any different than when employers check our backgrounds and references.
Jocelynblue85 Jocelynblue85 7 years
I worked as a tanning salon manager while in college and the salon i worked for was owned by Indian men. I felt constantly like they wanted to overpower and control every aspect of things...like when we could eat lunch, even when the salon was slow. They wrote bounced paychecks to employees, and when i called to tell him about it he actually LAUGHED! The next time the checks were late in informed him that i needed to get my check to pay for bills, and he said "what are you going to do about it if it is late" Needless to say i quit after 2 1/2 years of bizarre comments and descrimination. I got to the point to where i would rather live in a cardboard box than take it! Please if anyone is being descriminated past the point of human dignity...please leave and find something better
Jocelynblue85 Jocelynblue85 7 years
I worked as a tanning salon manager while in college and the salon i worked for was owned by Indian men. I felt constantly like they wanted to overpower and control every aspect of things...like when we could eat lunch, even when the salon was slow. They wrote bounced paychecks to employees, and when i called to tell him about it he actually LAUGHED! The next time the checks were late in informed him that i needed to get my check to pay for bills, and he said "what are you going to do about it if it is late" Needless to say i quit after 2 1/2 years of bizarre comments and descrimination. I got to the point to where i would rather live in a cardboard box than take it! Please if anyone is being descriminated past the point of human dignity...please leave and find something better
jkatie jkatie 7 years
I'm Jewish someone actually told me that I should be sent to a concentration camp because I didn't know the answer to a question about another religion
alltherage alltherage 7 years
at my old job. it was ironic. the office was run by a woman and i was the only woman under her. she treated the guys better and blatantly mistreated me - and her specialty was women studies!
Liss1 Liss1 7 years
Yes, i work in a construction company and i am the only woman here. Sometimes it sucks.
summerteeth summerteeth 7 years
I get it because of age and gender. I work in a very male oriented office, and I'm the only person in my office not over 50, although I've been here longer than two of the other employees.
Deidre Deidre 7 years
I agree with a lot of the posters here that any discomfort has been due to ageism. I think it's still the easiest kind of discrimination to get away with. It cuts both ways -- workers close to retirement age are stereotyped as incompetent with technology, whereas employees in their 20s can be labeled as inexperienced or flighty. I don't tease any of my co-workers for being the same age as my parents, so I would appreciate that they didn't compare me to their children.
psterling psterling 7 years
I worked at a start-up of all men. I don't think they meant to but on a few occasions I felt singled out for certain tasks because I was a woman.
LoveSarah LoveSarah 7 years
I'm the youngest person who works here, and I see a lot of ageism.
juju4 juju4 7 years
I have definitely experience discrimination based on my perceived age. I look about 8-10 years younger than I actually am, and I feel that I constantly have to reinforce my experience (I'm not the intern.... I have 8 years of management experience!).
UrbanBohemian UrbanBohemian 7 years
In some of the positions I've had, it's either for my youth or my gender. So yes.
javsmav javsmav 7 years
No. As an employment law attorney it would be pretty bad if I faced discrimination at work! I do see a lot of discrimination cases though.
Angela123 Angela123 7 years
I said yes, but I've only been mildly discriminated against. I live in the South, and I can tell that my bosses (all are older, wealthy, very Southern males) don't always take me as seriously as they should because I'm a woman and I'm only 24. It's nothing major, though, and it's still a great place to work.
sorrowja sorrowja 7 years
At my last job I did . . . I was Never apart of the team everyone was so fake and every other week someone left. I took a 20K pay cut to go work for this company because it was what I thought I wanted to do. However, 1 month before my wedding and us purchasing our home I was terminated. But what a relief that was because I was very unhappy. Nevertheless, I had already found a new job and I had no intentions of returning after my wedding. So I waited it out and walked away with a nice little severance . . .LOL and I had 1 whole free month to finishing planning the rest of my wedding and preparing to close on our home.
rickimc rickimc 7 years
My workplace is at least 75% female, so sometimes I think the men feel a little ganged up upon.
ilanac13 ilanac13 7 years
i don't really think that i've been discriminated against at work....not in real terms. i've had to deal with being passed over for things because of how coworkers might feel about my advancement when they have been there longer, but that's really not discrimination
HeidiMD HeidiMD 7 years
I haven't felt discriminated against at my work ever. I felt a little weird for a while because I was the inexperienced young one for a while, but everyone was helpful and never made me feel like "less of a member" of the group just because of my age and inexperience (at the time, of course).
redegg redegg 7 years
I had one office I worked in where my main boss made snide comments about my being a woman and my political beliefs. Everyone else that worked there was male.
psychobabble psychobabble 7 years
I was a temp on my breaks from college. Most of the jobs were in reception or general office assisting and most of the businesses were great and very appreciative of the help. However, a few places treated me like a child or as if I didn't have a brain in my pretty little head. One place had both with a dash of sexual harassment, yuck! Temping taught me a lot and I would do it again if I was between jobs, but man I will never forget that one hellish office!
WhatTheFrockBlog WhatTheFrockBlog 7 years
Not at my current job, but DEFINITELY at my old job. I was the only female in my department of 10 or 12 people. I was there longer than any of them and had seniority, but whenever the president/owner of the company would call a meeting with the group, he'd always call the guys into the conference room and ask me to get him a cup of coffee. It was seriously horrible.
WhatTheFrockBlog WhatTheFrockBlog 7 years
Not at my current job, but DEFINITELY at my old job.I was the only female in my department of 10 or 12 people. I was there longer than any of them and had seniority, but whenever the president/owner of the company would call a meeting with the group, he'd always call the guys into the conference room and ask me to get him a cup of coffee.It was seriously horrible.
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