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EEO/Diversity in the workplace 20 th May 2009. EEO in the workplace EEO is about ensuring employers get the best person or team for the job EEO is about.

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Presentation on theme: "EEO/Diversity in the workplace 20 th May 2009. EEO in the workplace EEO is about ensuring employers get the best person or team for the job EEO is about."— Presentation transcript:

1 EEO/Diversity in the workplace 20 th May 2009

2 EEO in the workplace EEO is about ensuring employers get the best person or team for the job EEO is about removing barriers so all employees have the chance to perform to their best EEO is about maximising the potential of New Zealand’s diverse population EEO is about valuing people and respecting their abilities, backgrounds and talent

3 Definition of diversity “… means understanding that each individual is unique, and recognising our individual differences. These can be along the dimensions of race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, socio-economic status, age, physical abilities, religious beliefs, political beliefs, or other ideologies.”

4 Why it matters? Demographic changes in New Zealand are affecting the labour force and workplaces. Some influencing factors include: Age Disability Generational mix Growing ethnic and cultural diversity Current labour market conditions

5 Greying New Zealand * 2006 Census: Median age = 35.9 years

6 More older people (65+) than children ( under 15 yrs)

7 Legislation How does EEO fit into New Zealand’s legislative framework? Human Rights Act (1993) State Sector Act (1988) - Good employer provisions Employment Relations Act (2000) - Flexible working provisions

8 Legislation: Human Rights Act (1993) - To prevent unfair treatment on the basis of 13 personal characteristics Sex/gender marital status religious belief ethical belief colour race ethnic or national origins disability age political opinion employment status family status sexual orientation

9 Human Rights Act (1993) Direct Discrimination: It is unlawful to directly discriminate against people on any of the 13 grounds listed above. Discrimination = being treated unfairly or less favourable than another person in the same or similar circumstances because of one of the 13 grounds of discrimination. There are exceptions to each ground.

10 Human Rights Act (1993) Indirect Discrimination: Occurs when an apparently neutral standard or practice is imposed on everyone, which has an adverse effect on one or more groups.

11 Implementing EEO in universities EEO policy EEO reporting EEO/Equity committees EEO office with dedicated staff (eg University of Auckland) Inclusion of EEO in strategic goals (eg AUT CSF “to ensure that the staff and student profile better reflects the population we serve”) Women in Leadership programmes Disability Resource Centre Student Advisors

12 Power pyramid: Governance - Women’s participation 5.07% (NZAX) 5.73% (NZDX) 8.65% (NZSX) 34.07% Crown Companies 42% State Sector Statutory Bodies 46.1% New Zealand labour force

13 University of Canterbury – women’s participation 7.25% Professors 16% Associate Professors 23.25% Total senior academic positions Percentage change Canterbury has had the highest percentage change since the first Census report in 2004 Total staff number ?

14 All NZ universities – women’s participation 15.18% Professors 23.19% Associate Professors

15 Workplace issues relevant to EEO Recruitment and retention Career development and promotion Work and family/caring responsibilities Flexible working arrangements Physical access, carparking Access to social activities Cultural awareness Workplace bullying and sexual harassment

16 What some other organisations are doing Setting up diversity groups or councils and networking groups Appointing heads of diversity Conducting diversity audits and workshops Increasing paid parental leave, measuring and monitoring return to work rates Holding cultural awareness days, offering prayer rooms, introducing cultural awareness training Auditing facilities for people with disabilities

17 Work-life initiatives Focus on people contributing effectively at work and meeting their non-work responsibilities Recognise the diversity of people’s interests and commitments outside work Help unlock latent human potential. Flexible work options include; flexitime, compressed working week, part-time work at all levels, job-sharing, flexible leave provisions, remote working options Literacy development programmes, health and wellness initiatives, sponsorship of community events Assistance with childcare or meeting family needs

18 What the EEO Trust does Diversity practitioners’ forums Tailored research and information Meetings and presentations for members EEO Library resources Magazine, research publications Case studies, toolkits, sample policies available on the EEO Trust website Additional resources available from


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