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reverse discrimination?

 
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Sensitive subject, I know. Do any of you other white guys feel like you have been discriminated against in an interview situation? I feel like I have no chance if I am being interviewed by someone who is foreign. The fact that I am a native speaker makes me an immediate threat to their position if I am even 75% the coder they are.
I have been passed over, not even called back, for positions which I know I was 100% qualified for.
 
pie sneak
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It happens, but maybe not as often as you might think. Usually reverse discrimination is when quotas of minority hires have to be met. I really doubt that ver many people would not hire a quality person for the sake of fearing that the hire would steal the hiree's job.

Your comment:

I have been passed over, not even called back, for positions which I know I was 100% qualified for.


makes me think that the person getting the job might be the one that calls them instead of sitting by the phone waiting for callbacks.

I can think of jobs that I've missed out on to someone less qualified because they showed so much more excitement about working for the company. It's funny how business is so personal.
 
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Pretty much a policy here that candidates never meet one another so it's hard to tell.

I have heard stories though (my sister works in HR, my father used to head a large corporation and conduct interviews himself for some posts and sit in in others).

It happens for sure. Some companies and agencies have policies stating that anyone belonging to a minority will get preferential treatment to the point of waving education requirements.
In companies run by minorities it's usually pointless to even try to get a job unless you're a member of their group or are asked by an existing employee.
There's actually a law here dictating that every company has to have a minimum percentage of people in each function belonging to ethnic minorities. There are serious fines for non-compliance which are only waved if you can prove you cannot get any candidates at all from minority groups.

Yes it makes people feel discriminated against. It stirs up resentment towards minorities which sometimes explodes.
And sadly those members of minority groups that benefit from these things are usually those members who don't approve of such preferential treatment...
 
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Proving discrimination - forward, reverse, age, gender, race, whatever, can be a real problem unless someone's fool enough to blab. Which, fortunately, can happen. I know a group right now where it's pretty obvious that their use for women is purely in menial roles and their use for other races has been severely curtailed by the Emancipation Proclamantion, but most discrimination is subtle these days.

On the one hand, you have perpetual losers who argue that they'd have been a shoo-in except for the ..., even though it's patently obvious that a moldy cheese sandwhich would be hired before they would.

On the other hand, just because someone doesn't like you doesn't mean that it's due to your race or whatever. Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar.

You do have to wonder however, when you go into a large office and the makeup of the employees is grossly disproprtionate to the population as a whole. In a smaller office however, it could be discrimination, or just statistical lumpiness. I went to work in a department where the boss and all the othe employees were female. When I left, there was only one female. She'd been hired by the new (male) boss, but was claiming discrimination based on race and gender.
 
blacksmith
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Dudley Dawson:

Sensitive subject, I know. Do any of you other white guys feel like you have been discriminated against in an interview situation? I feel like I have no chance if I am being interviewed by someone who is foreign.

I think that, just like with regular discrimination, it's easy to feel like one is being discriminated against even when it's not really happening.

Marc Peabody:

I really doubt that ver many people would not hire a quality person for the sake of fearing that the hire would steal the hiree's job.

It happens. I don't think it would be a racial or ethnic thing, though; people who worry about threats from highly qualified hires tend to worry about it with everyone, regardless of race.

I can think of jobs that I've missed out on to someone less qualified because they showed so much more excitement about working for the company.

Yes, that's quite important. Other things being equal, it just stands to reason that people who really want the job are likely to work harder and be more loyal. That makes it difficult for those who don't tend to express themselves through overt enthusiasm, though.

And that brings up another point: if one believes one is likely to be discriminated against, one is likely to act less enthusiastically during the interview, perhaps even showing a little suspicion. That can hurt one's chances a lot, even when - as is likely - no discrimination is actually happening at all.
[ December 17, 2004: Message edited by: Warren Dew ]
 
Greenhorn
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now in South Africa it is almost impossible for a white male to find a job if you do not have some super qualification

it is based on the local law called BEE (Black Economic Empowerment)
 
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I am an immigrant worker myself and I am involved in the ongoing recruitment process and I regularly interview candidates (first round, technical interviews). From my experience and from my experience I am yet to see favours done based on the background of the candidate! Even though interviewing a native candidate is easier (familiar accent, mannerisms etc), end of the day it all boils down to ones knowledge and ability to communicate effectively!

Good luck with your job search!
 
Jeroen Wenting
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Originally posted by Tim Holloway:
Proving discrimination - forward, reverse, age, gender, race, whatever, can be a real problem unless someone's fool enough to blab. Which, fortunately, can happen. I know a group right now where it's pretty obvious that their use for women is purely in menial roles and their use for other races has been severely curtailed by the Emancipation Proclamantion, but most discrimination is subtle these days.



usually. Unless there's an official published policy for it...
Like one Dutch police agency who (until a few years ago when a highlevel court spoke to make it illegal) had a written policy to hire ONLY minorities unless no minority candidates at all responded to a job offer.
Even if there was only minority respondent and him/(or more ideally her) was grossly underqualified (s)he would automatically get the job if all other applicants were not minorities.

Such cases are rare though, usually it's more subtle.
And in this case likely the only reason it was allowed to keep going for over a decade was because it was a government agency and one responsible for law enforcement...
Of course now they still hire mainly minorities, it's just not written down...
 
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Originally posted by Ashok Mash:
I am an immigrant worker myself and I am involved in the ongoing recruitment process and I regularly interview candidates (first round, technical interviews). From my experience and from my experience I am yet to see favours done based on the background of the candidate! Even though interviewing a native candidate is easier (familiar accent, mannerisms etc), end of the day it all boils down to ones knowledge and ability to communicate effectively!

Good luck with your job search!



Being foreigner myself and having all friends foreigners(russians, indians mostly), I noticed the opposite.
This is common opinion: "americans press too much for their rights, don't work overtime and expect higher pay". I've seen many situations when foreigner was chosen over american candidate for similar reasons.
One of my ex-bosses being american, actually would hire foreigners only in IT, in his opinion foreigners are more hardworking and better educated.
This doesn't happen everywhere,noone in my current company would ever do that, but I've seen this happening, not once. I also heard many americans complaining about this issue.
 
Sania Marsh
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Originally posted by Dudley Dawson:
The fact that I am a native speaker makes me an immediate threat to their position if I am even 75% the coder they are.



I don't think you being native speaker is a threat to anyone's position. It is IT, noone usually cares whether one has an accent or not, unless it is help desk maybe.
Funny, I just realized that all IT managers in my current company are foreighners (indians, chineese, polish...), some of them have quite strong accent, at the same time about 85% of help desk, web and application developers and designers are americans.
 
Jeroen Wenting
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Originally posted by herb slocomb:
In US government agencies, discrimination is the rule rather the exception. I've seen it at local and federal level; and its not subtle to anyone within the organization.



What I meant was that openly published procedures banning natives from jobs are rare, not the practice.
Sadly anyone even thinking of exposing such discrimination is immediately branded a fascist (at least in Europe).
 
Tim Holloway
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Originally posted by Rita Moore:

... in his opinion foreigners are more hardworking and better educated.
This doesn't happen everywhere,noone in my current company would ever do that, but I've seen this happening, not once. I also heard many americans complaining about this issue.



Well, actually, the alleged standard US work week is 40 hours, but I believe the national average has now dropped to 45. And, almost all IT positions are exempt from overtime pay, so claiming we're all a bunch of slackers is just a wheelbarrow full of rose fertilizer.

I realize that Time-in-Chair != Time-working-hard (which is more than a lot of management does), but a real slacker wouldn't give those extra 5 hours a week either.
 
Greenhorn
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I think the problem is not just any form of descrimination, but I think that some company are very picky recently when the developers are a dime in dozen. In my previous company, it will take months of interviews until they hire a developer. When we hired 2 developer, they both answered ALL the question correctly and impressed majority of the interviers.
 
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Originally posted by Tim Holloway:
Proving discrimination - forward, reverse, age, gender, race, whatever, can be a real problem unless someone's fool enough to blab. Which, fortunately, can happen. ... On the one hand, you have perpetual losers who argue that they'd have been a shoo-in except for the ..., even though it's patently obvious that a moldy cheese sandwhich would be hired before they would.

In the U.S., the population towards which affirmative action applies is still small enough that I consider it mostly just another business tax -- sort of like when the mob-controlled labor union demands five no-show jobs for low-level mobsters as part of the unofficial contract negotiation to avoid/end a strike.

The fact is, anyone who was passed over for the sake of an AA beneficiary probably would not have gotten the job anyway. For example, if your application to Harvard was turned down in favor of a less qualified AA recipient, there was probably another non-preferred candidate more qualified than you who was also turned down -- if not for AA, that other guy and not you would have been admitted.

In my last years as assistant professor at a major private university, the school was trying to draft an affirmative action policy. Apparently, the federal agency watchdog had threatened to sue the university in court for racial discrimination if they didn't do so, on the grounds that their faculty statistics were too far from the general population ratios. The school was in a cost-cutting mode, and departments were officially told that _no_one_ gets hired next year unless the new hire is of the under-"represented" group.


Originally posted by Tim Holloway:
You do have to wonder however, when you go into a large office and the makeup of the employees is grossly disproprtionate to the population as a whole. In a smaller office however, it could be discrimination, or just statistical lumpiness.

I am assuming, of course, that by "population as a whole" you mean "population of all people who are capable of doing the job." Political power aside, it's not clear why the number of functionally-illiterate people of a certain background in a nation should have anthing to do with the number of people of that background who get hired for high-knowledge positions.
 
Jeroen Wenting
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Originally posted by Frank Silbermann:
I am assuming, of course, that by "population as a whole" you mean "population of all people who are capable of doing the job." Political power aside, it's not clear why the number of functionally-illiterate people of a certain background in a nation should have anthing to do with the number of people of that background who get hired for high-knowledge positions.



well said Frank.
My yeargroup at university was about a hundred people.
Out of that hundred, 3 were females and 1 other belonged to an ethnic minority.
Hardly representative of society yet companies are forced by law to hire people like it were...

My father's company needed to hire a vet. Out of several dozen applicants there was only 1 who from an AA point of view should get preferential treatment. Problem was he had no education at all, let alone completed training as a vet... When they turned him down on those grounds he took the company to court on discrimination charges. At the time that happened a lot and more often than not the court agreed to give large amounts of money to these people. Luckily this judge had more sense...
 
Tim Holloway
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Originally posted by Frank Silbermann:

The fact is, anyone who was passed over for the sake of an AA beneficiary probably would not have gotten the job anyway. For example, if your application to Harvard was turned down in favor of a less qualified AA recipient, there was probably another non-preferred candidate more qualified than you who was also turned down -- if not for AA, that other guy and not you would have been admitted.



I have absolutely no idea what the significance of throwing a third person into the mix was. If you're passed over for discriminatory reasons, you're passed over, and it makes no difference whether there were others passed over for the same reason as well. Unless you can find out who they were and jointly file a discrimination complaint.

I am assuming, of course, that by "population as a whole" you mean "population of all people who are capable of doing the job." Political power aside, it's not clear why the number of functionally-illiterate people of a certain background in a nation should have anthing to do with the number of people of that background who get hired for high-knowledge positions.

A cynical person could interpret that as an implicit assumption that persons of certain racial or national origins are inherently - or even uniquely - functionally illiterate.

While statistically there may be certain populations today whose literacy level is below average, I'm not aware of any that are so overwhelmingly so that they couldn't make a reasonable contribution to the labor pool.

For that matter, literacy in a knowledge field is important, but hardly essential. It is, after all, the knowledge and the ability to apply it that count. Whole civilizations have existed where the rulers considered reading and writing as a task for menials.
 
Warren Dew
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Tim Holloway:

For that matter, literacy in a knowledge field is important, but hardly essential. It is, after all, the knowledge and the ability to apply it that count. Whole civilizations have existed where the rulers considered reading and writing as a task for menials.

Of course, after subtracting the salaries of two or three literate scribes, there wouldn't be much left for an illiterate software engineer.
 
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Originally posted by Tim Holloway:
For that matter, literacy in a knowledge field is important, but hardly essential. It is, after all, the knowledge and the ability to apply it that count. Whole civilizations have existed where the rulers considered reading and writing as a task for menials.



When I see some of the decisions made by CEO's I wonder if we aren't still in one of those civilizations.
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