I Know Why the Caged Employee Sings

In 1969 American poet and writer Maya Angelou wrote an autobiography called “I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings.” That’s where this blog title came from. In the book she talked about racism and sexism in her early years, feeling alone, trapped by her blackness, her talents stifled. I can relate. It’s no longer 1969, … Continue reading I Know Why the Caged Employee Sings

Being Inclusive Starts Early — Like, Grade-School Early

Intersectionality is an interesting thing. It’s defined roughly as an idea used to describe ways in which oppressive institutions like racism, sexism, homophobia and classism are interconnected and cannot be examined separately from one another. It’s interesting, and it’s complicated. I’d venture to say the complexity of the subject matter is one key reason so … Continue reading Being Inclusive Starts Early — Like, Grade-School Early

New York Shows Women of Color Some Love #diversity #equality #gender

On Thursday, New York City had a quiet, but notable first. New York City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito announced the Young Women’s Initiative, supposedly the first city initiative in the nation designed specifically for young women of color.Empire_State_Building_Cityscape_at_Dusk

“For too long, young women in New York City have experienced systemic disparity in all areas of life, whether its healthcare, education, or equal pay for equal work,” said Mark-Viverito in a statement. “These injustices are especially pervasive for young women of color, who have been denied opportunity for advancement and success time and time again throughout history. We are here today to say ‘no more.’ It’s time we stand up with women everywhere tackle this inequality head on — and this first-of-its-kind initiative will do just that.”

Of course, young women of color in New York aren’t the only ones who’ve suffered from systemic bias and discrimination, but that such a large metropolitan area is taking a step like this is encouraging — particularly because there was no predicating incident of note that would have made such a step necessary for PR purposes. Continue reading “New York Shows Women of Color Some Love #diversity #equality #gender”

Trevor Noah, I’m looking forward to this #diversity #inclusion @Trevornoah @TheDailyShow

I don’t watch much TV – Scandal and House of Cards don’t count because I watch them online – but I occasionally caught Jon Stewart and/or blogged about what he was up to. South African comedian Trevor Noah has been selected to succeed him. If this video is representative of what’s ahead, strap yourself in! I … Continue reading Trevor Noah, I’m looking forward to this #diversity #inclusion @Trevornoah @TheDailyShow

Women Need Men to #LeanInTogether #diversity #gender #bias #inclusion

Sheryl SandbergFor every horrible, aggravating, frustrating, ridiculous and unnecessary thing that happens to me just because I’m a woman, or just because I’m black, there are rays of hope.

Without these rays of hope, I can’t really contemplate my existence. It would be barren. Hopeless. I don’t know if I would exist in the shape and form that I currently do. I might be crazy, and justifiably so.

Last week I ran across an article filled with quotes from men who support women. It was just the ray of light I needed to shake off the latest evidence of sexism in the workplace that crossed my desk. The piece went directly to the source, men who recognize, acknowledge and have pledged their time to “lean in,” in a way Sheryl Sandberg may not have fully envisioned but I believe would whole heartedly approve of. Continue reading “Women Need Men to #LeanInTogether #diversity #gender #bias #inclusion”

No AP History, Unless It’s Old-School American History #diversity #inclusion #education

HistoryWhen I was in school, I took AP classes in history, English and Spanish. I couldn’t tell you what specifics the curriculum covered — most days by dinnertime I couldn’t tell you what I ate for lunch — but I do remember the lively discussions that were typical of those gatherings.

There was usually a good natured argument or two going on as we chewed over the nuances of things not covered in traditional classes. That’s what makes this latest news bit I ran across so incredibly disturbing.

According to an article I read in New York Magazine, lawmakers in Oklahoma and Georgia are doing their best to ban AP classes in their respective states because — and this is the scary bit — essentially, they seem to believe that what’s not pro-American or old-school American, shouldn’t be taught at all. Continue reading “No AP History, Unless It’s Old-School American History #diversity #inclusion #education”

Hey Apple, Nice Gesture #diversity #inclusion #technology

Earlier this week Apple announced $10K in scholarships for minorities in the tech industry. Great! After that big reveal of diversity data from most of the tech big wigs in Silicon Valley a few weeks back, here’s a leader in the industry making a definitive move to put its money where its mouth is.Apple money

Well, maybe. When you read the headline, it’s like, cool beans. Apple has acknowledged there’s a lack of diversity in tech and has come up with a solution help feed the pipeline to change that. But when you think about it, meh. Continue reading “Hey Apple, Nice Gesture #diversity #inclusion #technology”

An Interesting Spin on Hispanic Data #Hispanic #diversity

More Hispanics are declaring themselves white. I know, it surprised me too, but that was the title of a New York Times piece I read this week by Nate Cohn.LatinoHeritage3

My first thought was, really? When I think of Hispanic minorities, the first adjective that pops to mind is ethnic pride. The many subgroups in this demographic have fought vocally and with dignity to preserve their language and customs. Yet according to the 2010 census many of these Americans had different answers for census questions about race and ethnicity. Since the 2000 census some 1.2 million of the 35 million who identified as “Hispanic, Latino or Spanish origin,” switched to “white.” Continue reading “An Interesting Spin on Hispanic Data #Hispanic #diversity”