"A Journey of 1,000 miles begins with a single step."
~ Lao Tzu ~
Okay, time to take a temperature check on the #EthnicityPayGap journey.
Wow, it only seems like yesterday when Dianne Greyson, Director of Equilibrium Mediation Consulting began talking about the #EthnicityPayGap and how strongly she felt about it and, was impassioned to write the first article and, through subtle persuasion, she wrote the second. It wasn’t something she just wanted to latch onto, it was something she felt really strongly about and started reading more about the subject in order to gain perspective; taking into consideration and acknowledging the work that others had penned on the said same subject matter as well.
I know the conversations that Dianne and I have had over #EthnicityPayGap have evoked some serious strong emotions from me, especially around the pay I knew I was denied, but others with less accreditation, skills and the like, who didn’t look like me, had no problems at all in commanding the pay for roles equal to that of mine.
It seems strange talking about pay as it was so long ago whilst working within the corporate organisational arena; the problem is, like a piece of paper folded in half, both sides are the same and, so it is that what we spoke about the disparity in pay and the fact that it is still alive and thriving in this day and age. I write this statement not because I find it funny, but the mere fact that it is thriving and, although there is much talk about it within the walls of institutions and the government, nothing is actually being done to rectify this unequal setting. I did however, read somewhere that this pay disparity will be rectified in five years! That’s not funny at all in my eyes, it should be addressed now and effective change and movement seen within reasonable timescales; they’ve done it before on other matters that are deemed less important but, will take precedence none-the-less so, they can do it for the massive chasm known as the #EthnicityPayGap.
To this end, this is why I’ve decided to write this post because I believe like Dianne, this needs to be addressed and not just paid lip service and long range initiatives that will invariably fizzle out at some point, not bearing the fruit it was intended to do.
Journey Thus Far:
Well, since Dianne first published her article in April 2018, there were not many voices out there pushing the agenda, and since then, so much has happened… she created the hashtag #EthnicityPayGap and decided she wanted to wear it on a t-shirt for herself and took a picture and posted it.
Soon others (myself and my daughter included), enquired whether we could buy a t-shirt with what she had on hers and so, the #EthnicityPayGap movement began and a collage created with pictures of all those who chose to join the movement by purchasing a t-shirt, taking a photo and sending it to Dianne.
This by no means is a publicity stunt, because we know there are those out there who are strong advocates as we are towards this and believe in it wholeheartedly but, for whatever reason, they do not feel they can come into the light and show their solidarity with the movement along with everyone else. It’s hard especially when you may work in an environment where if it were known one’s feelings around this topic, may cause bad feelings or even worse so totally understand in that respective. We need to stand up and stand in the gap around reclaiming equity and authority across these realms.
There have been a lot of news, articles and even conversations on the #EthnicityPayGap from other contributors who also feel strongly and want this issue highlighted and addressed. Dianne published her 2nd article in August 2018 and had a frank Conversation with me (click here to watch)
on the said subject matter, a link posted at the end of the article and has been viewed numerous times by individuals and, it was great to see Morgan Lobb, CEO and Founder of Vercida.com, write a well-informed article entitled: ‘Mind the gap: why are ethnic minority staff being paid a third less’? In this article, he outlines some salient points that came out during our conversation.
Since then, Dianne has been asked to contribute and had an article published in the LEAD Magazine, with another soon to be published in another magazine. It has been so empowering sharing her journey and seeing the movement gain momentum and how her passion has propelled her forward as a serious advocate for change.
Why am writing about this you may ask, because I believe in the movement too and, I feel the more that this shared and brought to the forefront in the sight of the decision makers and policy makers within the government, who can drive this forward to make the necessary changes that are long overdue.
While we, who are few but growing, stand in the breach for the #EthnicityPayGap, hope there will be others who feel just as strongly as we do and decide to stand up against this disparity with us.