I’m sure many folks have seen the iconic classic film “9 to 5” with Dolly Parton, Lily Tomlin and Jane Fonda cast into the roles of employees scheming against their chauvinistic boss. The film supposedly represented the women’s rights struggle in the workplace.
Looking back now, we laugh and egg them on through the television screen in relief that we no longer have to struggle and in the confidence that women are finally equal. Unfortunately, this is a false sense of security.
Whether through wage differences or the lack of women in leadership positions, females are still discriminated against. Sexism in the workplace is an issue that might be less visible than before, but it still exists and needs to be addressed.
I work in a hotel which one would imagine is a very hospitable environment, focusing on guest contentment and comfort. We have gone through our fair share of managers for various departments since I started working there and something came to my attention the other day.
The hotel has many managers: Housekeeping, Food and Beverage, Rooms, etc. and they have come and gone. Never in any department but Human Resources have I seen a woman in charge since I began last July.
It’s fascinating. Is this indicative that the company feels that women should be relegated to playing mother and fixing problems between employees? We have plenty of women in supervisory positions who are fantastic enough to be managers, but they are relegated to playing second fiddle while the men claim the name for themselves.
This isn’t an isolated case though. Take for instance the Oscar winning film “American Hustle.” After Sony’s e-mails were hacked, they revealed — much to my horror — that the male leads in the film received a higher percentage of the film profits than Jennifer Lawrence or Amy Adams did.
Upon the film’s premiere, Lawrence had already won the Oscar for Best Leading Actress for her role in “Silver Linings Playbook.” Adams had been nominated for four Academy Awards, more than Bradley Cooper and Jeremy Renner combined. Yet still, these women made less profit off the film than the men.
Patricia Arquette made a rousing speech at the Oscars that had Meryl Streep on her feet shouting “Yes!” twice. She said “To every woman who gave birth to every taxpayer and citizen of this nation, we have fought for everybody else’s equal rights. It’s our time to have wage equality once and for all and equal rights for women in the United States of America.”
I agree with her wholeheartedly. It’s time for women to stand up for what they deserve. Examine your workplace salaries, find out if men are getting perks in your workplace that women are not and make your opinions known. A small pebble may not seem like it can make any difference until it starts an avalanche!