Affirmative action bake sale

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Affirmative action bake sale

I can't believe no one has started this one yet!

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Affirmative action bake sale ruffles feathers at Cal

UC Berkeley's student Republicans' plans to hold a satirical anti-affirmative action bake sale have ruffled feathers across campus, sparking debate about discrimination and complaints about trying to quash alternative points of view.
The Berkeley College Republicans planned the bake sale Tuesday on the school's Sproul Plaza to protest a simultaneous event by affirmative-action supporters.
The latter group will be organizing phone calls asking Gov. Jerry Brown to sign a bill that would roll back some restrictions on race-based university admissions.
A Brown spokesman said he could not comment on pending legislation.
The sale offers discounts on baked goods based on the buyers' race and gender, with whites paying $2, Asians paying $1.50 and African-Americans paying 75 cents. Women get 25 cents off all purchases.
The event attracted angry responses from some students.
The campus student government held an emergency meeting Sunday to issue a resolution condemning discrimination by student groups, satirical or otherwise.
Without referring to the bake sale, the student government's resolution asked students "to be conscious of our diverse campus community and to be aware of the trials and struggles that each student has faced, is facing, and will face."
"I fully support the idea of members of (the Republican club) expressing their opinions," said Vishalli Loomba, the UC Berkeley student-body president. "But I don't think the tactic is appropriate, and many students find it offensive."
Affirmative action bake sales have riled the campus before. A 1996 law, prompted by voter-approved Proposition 209, banned affirmative action in admissions and public hiring.
The law and similar ones across the country led to student protests, and counter-protesters responded with satirical bake sales at Berkeley and other universities.
Berkeley College Republicans also staged a sale in 2003, when the U.S. Supreme Court heard arguments on the legality of race-based admissions at University of Michigan.
"If you don't come, you're a racist!" read the UC Berkeley Republicans' posting about its latest bake sale on Facebook. The posting has since been toned down.
Leaders of the Republican club did not respond to interview requests Monday, but club President Shawn Lewis posted a message on the group's website decrying the antagonistic response to the bake sale.
"I have witnessed the harassment of the creators of the Facebook event, threats to those who plan on participating in the event, and a total mischaracterization of the purpose of the bake sale," he wrote. "Threatening and intimidating political opposition should not
be part of the Cal community."

Is this an effective way to highlight ones feelings surrounding affirmative action? Would you be offended by this bake sale being held on your college campus? Do you like or dislike the concept of affirmative action, in general (especially as a women, who has likely benefitted from it??.

culturedmom's picture
Joined: 09/30/06
Posts: 1131

You @$%*! You do like watching people squirm don't you. lol I'll be back (though you probably already knew that).

Spacers's picture
Joined: 12/29/03
Posts: 4100

Someone commented about this on the Chronicle's website, saying that Cal should have just used normal market pricing: African-Americans pay the most because no one wants to put a store in a ghetto; whites pay actual fair market value; Chinese pay less because of government subsidies; and Native Americans pay the least because they have no taxes on the reservation. Blum 3

But yeah, it's wrong either way.

ETA the answer to the real question... I think affirmative action had its place & time, and perhaps there is still a place & time for it occasionally. But as a general rule, we should all be color blind & see *people* instead of brown people & white people & yellow people & pink people (that's me after too much sun!)

wlillie's picture
Joined: 09/17/07
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Is this an effective way to highlight ones feelings surrounding affirmative action?

Very effective; the entire nation knows how they feel

Would you be offended by this bake sale being held on your college campus?

Yep, I'd hate to pay 1.75 if others were paying less

Do you like or dislike the concept of affirmative action, in general (especially as a women, who has likely benefitted from it?

No, I think it's an outdated concept that has done what it's supposed to do (as much as possible) and now only divides people.

Joined: 12/10/05
Posts: 1681

I dislike the concept of affirmative action and think the bake sale was an excellent way to get their message across.

I wouldn't have been offended, but I probably wouldn't have purchased anything from them either. I like to stay out of politics for the most part.

Joined: 03/08/03
Posts: 3189

I think it sounds extremely effective. It makes a very strong, clear statement.

I am torn on affirmative action. It can be outdated depending on the field. I think it tries to solve the existing problem at the wrong end of the process.

elleon17's picture
Joined: 01/26/09
Posts: 1981

I think this was a genius way of getting their point across.

I do not think it is offensive and what better of a place to voice an opinion on the world than a college campus. Just because it is a belief that is not typical in the college protest of the past doesn't make it wrong (anti-war, anti-establishment, etc)

I think the best part of it is that it shows that Berkley isn't as liberal an institution as its reputation.

Do you like or dislike the concept of affirmative action, in general (especially as a women, who has likely benefitted from it? I have never benefited from affirmative action and I don't agree with it. I think people should be judged by merits alone. Its our world, we judge, I personally feel people have moved past the judgement on race. They've now moved on to judging people for being fat, ugly, smoking, etc.....

mom3girls's picture
Joined: 01/09/07
Posts: 1535

I am shocked they let republicans into Berkley!

I am not sure that this is an accurate portrayal of Affirmative action, might have made more sense to have only a certain number of items available to each group. But I do believe that they did what they intended, they let people know exactly where they stand on the subject.

I think Affirmative action, just like most unions, were necessary once but have outlived their need.

Rivergallery's picture
Joined: 05/23/03
Posts: 1301

I think it is great, made me think before I knew it was about the Republican group doing it I thought, great here we go again.. LOL

Not sure WHERE affirmative action is needed .. maybe when it comes to following the fed regs and admitting homeschoolers the same as public schoolers. Or international disparities, but as far as I can tell numbers wise there is no action needed any more when it comes to race or gender.
With over 1/2 those college grads being women, and a higher %age than the country demographics graduating in minority races, I think if we continue it could be bending things the opposite way. And creating an imbalance where it is as "fair" as it gets now.

Alissa_Sal's picture
Joined: 06/29/06
Posts: 6427

I think it is effective, since we all "get it" and it is national news.

I still think it's an ugly thing to do, and shows a poor understanding of Affirmative Action.

wlillie's picture
Joined: 09/17/07
Posts: 1796

I think they understand, but to actually say that so many Black people have to buy a cookie isn't as effective (or plausible) as giving a discount.

Alissa_Sal's picture
Joined: 06/29/06
Posts: 6427

I think that portraying Affirmative Action as if it means that black people have to pay half as much, or make twice as much money, or have it twice as easy as white people is completely absurd, and not only shows a poor understanding of AA, but also a complete disconnect with the reality.

Joined: 03/08/03
Posts: 3189

"Alissa_Sal" wrote:

I think it is effective, since we all "get it" and it is national news.

I still think it's an ugly thing to do, and shows a poor understanding of Affirmative Action.

I do agree that it isn't an accurate depiction of how Affirmative Action works.

But it definitely expresses an opinion very clearly.

wlillie's picture
Joined: 09/17/07
Posts: 1796

What Laurie said. I dont' believe that Black people or Women have things given to them for half the work it takes a white male, but the fact is that Affirmative Action does allow for preferential treatment if you are a minority. There is literally no way to quantify it, but these guys got the message out about how they feel. Which I'm pretty sure was the whole point of the bake sale.

Alissa_Sal's picture
Joined: 06/29/06
Posts: 6427

I agree that they got their feelings across. I guess I just don't have a ton of sympathy for people who seem to feel that as white males, they are getting the short end of the stick in this country. Cry me a river.

Joined: 03/14/09
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"Rivergallery" wrote:

Not sure WHERE affirmative action is needed ..

More white people need to be in jail.

culturedmom's picture
Joined: 09/30/06
Posts: 1131

"blather" wrote:

More white people need to be in jail.

For the win!!!! I love you!!!

Joined: 12/10/05
Posts: 1681

"Alissa_Sal" wrote:

I agree that they got their feelings across. I guess I just don't have a ton of sympathy for people who seem to feel that as white males, they are getting the short end of the stick in this country. Cry me a river.

I agree with this. I don't think white males are being discriminated against. But, I also don't think the answer to creating equality is stipulating how many white, black, male, female, etc get to enter various programs or training.

boilermaker's picture
Joined: 08/21/02
Posts: 1984

It seems to me like most don't really understand AA. The way we apply it and the way I've understood it is that if all other things are equal (education, experience, qualifications, etc.) then, and only then, can you look at race as a deciding factor.

Also, I don't know what world you live in, but in my world, women still lag significantly behind when it comes to wages (even for identical education and experience) and the number of black CEO's is embarrassingly low. Seems to me that we still have a ways to go....

http://www.blackentrepreneurprofile.com/black-billionaires/

And, on average, women earn 77 cents for every dollar a man ears. Seriously? And even when you enter every variable into the equation, you still can only get to 91 cents on the dollar. I don't know about you, but I'd like my 9% thankyouverymuch.

http://www.time.com/time/nation/article/0,8599,1983185,00.html

(coming from a woman who is very aware of this gap as the only breadwinner for my family)

elleon17's picture
Joined: 01/26/09
Posts: 1981

"boilermaker" wrote:

It seems to me like most don't really understand AA. The way we apply it and the way I've understood it is that if all other things are equal (education, experience, qualifications, etc.) then, and only then, can you look at race as a deciding factor.

In my experience in the college application world (albeit 15 years ago) this was not the case. At that time a 3.5 gradepoint white male student would have been denied acceptance while a 3.0 (after weighting the average up because of a lesser school district) black student would have been accepted at our state university. At the time they did a whole report about it in the newspapers.

I think these are the standards that the students are protesting. I think they are trying to say all things being equal in the academic world, shouldn't it be blindly considered on grades, test scores, essays, and other academically founded credits and no consideration to gender, age or race.

Joined: 12/10/05
Posts: 1681

"boilermaker" wrote:

It seems to me like most don't really understand AA. The way we apply it and the way I've understood it is that if all other things are equal (education, experience, qualifications, etc.) then, and only then, can you look at race as a deciding factor.

Also, I don't know what world you live in, but in my world, women still lag significantly behind when it comes to wages (even for identical education and experience) and the number of black CEO's is embarrassingly low. Seems to me that we still have a ways to go....

http://www.blackentrepreneurprofile.com/black-billionaires/

And, on average, women earn 77 cents for every dollar a man ears. Seriously? And even when you enter every variable into the equation, you still can only get to 91 cents on the dollar. I don't know about you, but I'd like my 9% thankyouverymuch.

http://www.time.com/time/nation/article/0,8599,1983185,00.html

(coming from a woman who is very aware of this gap as the only breadwinner for my family)

To the bolded. That isn't how it is done in the RCMP, for example. I know of at least two men who were accepted because they were minorities who spoke a second language (spanish), despite being far older than most receruits (40 yrs).

As far as men earning more. I just don't buy it. I don't believe that the male greeter at Walmart earns more than the female one. Overall, averaged out based on tax returns, sure men probably makes more, but I don't think that equates to two people doing the exact same job and the female earning less. I don't see that in my field, my husbands, or any jobs we've worked in.

Joined: 06/04/07
Posts: 1368

"kris_w" wrote:

To the bolded. That isn't how it is done in the RCMP, for example. I know of at least two men who were accepted because they were minorities who spoke a second language (spanish), despite being far older than most receruits (40 yrs).

As far as men earning more. I just don't buy it. I don't believe that the male greeter at Walmart earns more than the female one. Overall, averaged out based on tax returns, sure men probably makes more, but I don't think that equates to two people doing the exact same job and the female earning less. I don't see that in my field, my husbands, or any jobs we've worked in.

I disagree. If the starting wage is negotiable, there absolutely can be vast differences in what they pay, even at Walmart or Target for the same job. I know my DH was hired at a higher starting wage at Target than his coworkers were making at the time he started, doing the same job just because they liked him as he interviewed well. They specifically told him not to share with other employees what he is being paid. Even promotional wages or yearly raises may vary based on how they're rated by supervisors. And if a specific supervisor is doing a review on someone they don't like or like very much for personal reasons, that may influence how much of a raise they may get.

boilermaker's picture
Joined: 08/21/02
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"elleon17" wrote:

In my experience in the college application world (albeit 15 years ago) this was not the case. At that time a 3.5 gradepoint white male student would have been denied acceptance while a 3.0 (after weighting the average up because of a lesser school district) black student would have been accepted at our state university. At the time they did a whole report about it in the newspapers.

I think these are the standards that the students are protesting. I think they are trying to say all things being equal in the academic world, shouldn't it be blindly considered on grades, test scores, essays, and other academically founded credits and no consideration to gender, age or race.

Noelle- they don't do it this way anymore. Ever since the U of Michigan case (2004 or 2005?), colleges across the country don't do it that way anymore. U of M lost that case and the court ruled that AA was unconstitutional when applied that way. Now they have to take a holistic approach to college admittance.

See: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Grutter_v._Bollinger

Kris,

I don't know what to tell you-- I suppose you can choose to not "buy" it-- but the statistics don't lie. Data point after data point illustrates this. In my field, it absolutely exists. We just received our annual salary survey info and the pay gap for women increases as they age. For women in their 30's the gap is only about $5K, but by the time they are in their 50's it skyrockets to $40K.

Here's another article about salary. This on is lawyers-- where female lawyers make on average $65K LESS than their male counterparts.

http://www.cleveland.com/business/index.ssf/2010/07/women_attorneys_still_falling.html

I really don't understand how one can explain this stuff away. And sure, maybe the cashiers at WalMart all make the same, but even Wally World had a giant case about men being promoted more quickly than women to that of supervisor....yes the case was dismissed, but the evidence was pretty compelling IMO.

elleon17's picture
Joined: 01/26/09
Posts: 1981

"boilermaker" wrote:

Noelle- they don't do it this way anymore. Ever since the U of Michigan case (2004 or 2005?), colleges across the country don't do it that way anymore. U of M lost that case and the court ruled that AA was unconstitutional when applied that way. Now they have to take a holistic approach to college admittance.

That's good to know. I'm from Michigan and was actually referring to U of M

AlyssaEimers's picture
Joined: 08/22/06
Posts: 6561

I am sure this varys by region. A while back there was a story in the news about reverse discrimination. We live in an area that their are far more blacks than whites. (If my daughter went to the school she was zoned for she would be the only white child in her class). Two white police officers sued the city because they were repeatedly denied promotion because they were white. The city did not feel a white person should be police chief when so many of the people in the city were black.

My old neighbor girls also went to the school we were zoned for (has since moved) and was the only white girl in her class. Her father told me she was teased all of the time and the other students would tell her that they would not sit next to a while girl.

I am not saying their is no black discrimination here. There is plenty, but there is also discrimination against white males. We live in the city, and it is mostly minorities. If you go over a couple of counties where my husband works it is the exact opposite where there are only 3 black students in his school.

wlillie's picture
Joined: 09/17/07
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If you think about it though, I bet women with children end up taking about 9% more time off than men do at a minimum. I know the number of SAHD's is growing, but in most working mom's families, they are normally the ones to go home for a sick kid, appts, field trips, and are 100% the ones who take off for childrbirth.

If you are off for 6 weeks (or more in other countries) for childbirth, two or three sick days for your kid, two or three for your sick days, an hour a month for appts, and your male co-worker takes less than a few days off in the same year, which should get paid more?

Add to that the number of women who don't fight for the raises and credit compared to the number of men who will and you've got a substantial number.

Joined: 05/31/06
Posts: 4780

Yep. Until Men can carry, birth, and nurse babies, the wage gap makes sense to me, honestly. At the end of the day, biology can be a real b!tch, that's just a fact.

boilermaker's picture
Joined: 08/21/02
Posts: 1984

"wlillie" wrote:

If you think about it though, I bet women with children end up taking about 9% more time off than men do at a minimum. I know the number of SAHD's is growing, but in most working mom's families, they are normally the ones to go home for a sick kid, appts, field trips, and are 100% the ones who take off for childrbirth.

If you are off for 6 weeks (or more in other countries) for childbirth, two or three sick days for your kid, two or three for your sick days, an hour a month for appts, and your male co-worker takes less than a few days off in the same year, which should get paid more?

Add to that the number of women who don't fight for the raises and credit compared to the number of men who will and you've got a substantial number.

See, in my professional circles I don't see this. I see working parents BOTH take equal time off for sick kids, doc appts, etc. They rotate based upon their particular schedules on that day or another.

Not to mention that many professional positions are salaried, and if we take time away from the office we have it. You shouldn't be "punished" for taking time off that is available to you. The women I know and work with typically make this time up and go above and beyond just to avoid that very perception. We do another shift btwn 8-11p, when the kids are in bed and we're "catching" up.....except many aren't compensated for this.

Honestly, this shocks me how many are defending the pay gap.

What about explaining the other ways that women pay professionally? More successful women than men are single or divorced. Successful professional women are less likely to have children than their male counterparts. Statistically women pay a higher price for professional success than men.

wlillie's picture
Joined: 09/17/07
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Statistically, women are more likely to be involved in their children's lives and because of this even women who don't have children end up paying the toll too. We're salaried and military so our time off is usually easily split into two without much fuss because we are blessed to have leadership who understand having kids. However, ine of the families I know has a civilian wife and because of his job she *is* always the one who has to stay home with their kids when something comes up. She is more likely to get sick, more likely to be tired from staying up, more likely to need to do something non-work related even while *at* work. This isn't out of the ordinary in our community or the one we just left even for civilians married to civilians.

It's a fact for most people and for those who have the opposite or a more even system, it sucks they get caught up in it, but it's definitely reasonable that women get paid less. Especially in places like Canada. I'm seriously mentally exhausted trying to imagine dealing with a year long maternity leave (depending on what the mom decides) as an HR rep. Lawyers would be even more serious. Bed rest? Pre-E? Early childbirth? Sick kid once he's born? All going to throw the schedule off whack.

AND I'm really sorry, but if a woman is taking more time off from a salaried position than a man in the exact same spot is, why on Earth shouldnt' he be rewarded with more money? Just because my boss tells me to go home at 4 doesn't mean I don't get brownie points and a more favorable duty the next time because I went above and beyond what was expected of me and stayed.

Joined: 05/31/06
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"boilermaker" wrote:

See, in my professional circles I don't see this. I see working parents BOTH take equal time off for sick kids, doc appts, etc. They rotate based upon their particular schedules on that day or another.

Not to mention that many professional positions are salaried, and if we take time away from the office we have it. You shouldn't be "punished" for taking time off that is available to you. The women I know and work with typically make this time up and go above and beyond just to avoid that very perception. We do another shift btwn 8-11p, when the kids are in bed and we're "catching" up.....except many aren't compensated for this.

Honestly, this shocks me how many are defending the pay gap.

What about explaining the other ways that women pay professionally? More successful women than men are single or divorced. Successful professional women are less likely to have children than their male counterparts. Statistically women pay a higher price for professional success than men.

So you take time off when your kids are sick or to go to all of their doctor appointments? Even with a SAHP? Or, are you just talking about dual working families? In my professional circle in a heavily male dominated field (finance) about 95% of my counterparts had stay at home wives. They took their 2 weeks of paid paternity leave, but were very infrequently taking days off to tend to sick children or whatnot. They had a spouse at home doing that. I'm absolutely sure that that contributed to their success.

Don't forget about the dry cleaning! I think that that bothers me more than the wage gap.

boilermaker's picture
Joined: 08/21/02
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Oh the dry cleaning-- so. not. fair. Neither is hose. I hate nylons. Hate them.

My dh stays home with sick kids and takes them to appointments most of the time. Once in a while I *want* to go, but mostly that is his role (I hate seeing them get needles anyways Wink ) But of dual career couples I totally see moms and dads taking equal time off for random sick kids and field trips, etc.

I totally think having a full time SAHP makes a huge difference-- it allows so much flexibility that two working parents don't have. Absolutely that is an advantage in the career world IMO.

Do I think that 12 weeks of missed work for maternity leave (assuming average of 2 kids/family and that most women take 6 weeks for maternity leave) should equal a lifetime of 10% less pay? Heck. No.

Joined: 05/31/06
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"boilermaker" wrote:

Oh the dry cleaning-- so. not. fair. Neither is hose. I hate nylons. Hate them.

My dh stays home with sick kids and takes them to appointments most of the time. Once in a while I *want* to go, but mostly that is his role (I hate seeing them get needles anyways Wink ) But of dual career couples I totally see moms and dads taking equal time off for random sick kids and field trips, etc.

I totally think having a full time SAHP makes a huge difference-- it allows so much flexibility that two working parents don't have. Absolutely that is an advantage in the career world IMO.

Do I think that 12 weeks of missed work for maternity leave (assuming average of 2 kids/family and that most women take 6 weeks for maternity leave) should equal a lifetime of 10% less pay? Heck. No.

I agree. The parent who stays at home allows the other one more career success. A great set up for a family with young kids, IMO.

Didn't a recent study show that amongst 20 somethings with no children there is no wage gap? I mean, I don't know. To me it makes sense. Is it "super duper career fair" that we are the ones who carry children and deliver them and nurse them? No. Can we change it? (The biology aspect of it). No.

If you want to have a family MAY you earn less as a mother because you need extra time off to care for the people you chose to create? Yes. May this cost you some earning potential? Yes. Only you (general) can decide if (knowing that reality) it is worth it to you to have a family.

Had I stayed with my company, since I have three kids, I would have taken 39 weeks (plus my 5 weeks of paid vacation/year which I could tack on to my maternity leave, so add 15 more weeks to that.....)at 100% salary. That was a lot of money. Over a years worth of salary and no work done! Like it or not, how can that not be viewed as a bit of a liability?

I mean, sometimes there is an aspect of trade off to life....isn't there? I know I'm going to lose my feminist card for saying this.....is it terrible to admit that this makes sense to me?

elleon17's picture
Joined: 01/26/09
Posts: 1981

"wlillie" wrote:

If you think about it though, I bet women with children end up taking about 9% more time off than men do at a minimum. I know the number of SAHD's is growing, but in most working mom's families, they are normally the ones to go home for a sick kid, appts, field trips, and are 100% the ones who take off for childrbirth.

If you are off for 6 weeks (or more in other countries) for childbirth, two or three sick days for your kid, two or three for your sick days, an hour a month for appts, and your male co-worker takes less than a few days off in the same year, which should get paid more?

Add to that the number of women who don't fight for the raises and credit compared to the number of men who will and you've got a substantial number.

I don't agree that because I take more sick days from the ones I am alloted (actually at my company sick days don't exist, so it's out of my vacation time) is why I should be paid less.

I do agree that men are probably more aggressive on asking form raises then women are.

Does anyone know the difference in starting pay? Is that higher too?

Joined: 05/31/06
Posts: 4780

"elleon17" wrote:

I don't agree that because I take more sick days from the ones I am alloted (actually at my company sick days don't exist, so it's out of my vacation time) is why I should be paid less.
?

Dumb question, but ARE you paid less than your male counterparts with the exact same tenure and experience as you?

elleon17's picture
Joined: 01/26/09
Posts: 1981

We are dual professions in our household and it is definitely mostly me, actually 99% me.

I think it is because I am a little bit controlling and don't really give him the chance to offer, but it is seriously draining any chance we have for family vacation!

I agree with pps that salaried women make up for missed time at work in their 'off' time. Working after the kids are in bed, answering emails on the weekends, etc. I rarely take lunches away from my desk because having to pick up DS early or take him to the doctor. I make up the time. Also, my work is never suffering regardless. I could be an emotional wreck one day, but my analysis and numbers will be right on. Wink

elleon17's picture
Joined: 01/26/09
Posts: 1981

"Potter75" wrote:

Dumb question, but ARE you paid less than your male counterparts with the exact same tenure and experience as you?

Honestly, I don't know for sure. Where I work is notorious for underpaying. We all pretty consistently are paid 50% of industry average in our area. I took the job to get the experience and am now looking to transistion with the experience it gave me.

I would say I am a victim to nepotism and friendships in my office. They are paid more. Also, one of my reportee's makes very close to what I do, except he is hourly. It's hard to complain about it because he is very close friends with my boss and who do I complain to? We are a large company, but we are family owned and it is a bit of the good-ole boy(and girl) network. If you haven't been here 30 years, then you aren't in the club and I am surely not going to wait for that day. lol!

wlillie's picture
Joined: 09/17/07
Posts: 1796

But there is nothing to prove that men aren't working at home too. I'm out of the office a lot and I can honestly say that a lot of the people I work with don't realize that I'm out running errands that directly reflect in the amount of work I get done. If you aren't visibly working, then people assume you are carrying a lighter workload than they are. It doesn't matter if you have a vagina or a penis, it affects how they think of you. Today I was allowed to telecommute for an important project that needed to be done by 11. No one realized I was able to get 4 hours worth of work time in 3 hours of uninterrupted work at home time, they just realized my body was missing.

Mom's that complete there work at home during the after hours are also usually using the last of whatever they've got for the day. Think about it. How much more productive are you when it's not 8-10 at night after a day with work/kids?

elleon17's picture
Joined: 01/26/09
Posts: 1981

wlillie - I so agree with you. It is so much about perception. I have asked to telecommute, but the request was declined and I think mostly because for many companies they are not used to the idea that someone can be productive without having to sit in a specific office space.

There is nothing that I do that needs the office I go to be accomplished. Actually, if I wasn't at the office, I would have more time because people wouldn't keep coming in my office for random chit chats.

But when my office light is dark, people assume you are not working or are less productive. I never understood why in the business world it is better to take 12 hours to do a task and have the boss see you coming in early and staying later versus me accomplishing the same task in 5 hours?

Joined: 03/08/03
Posts: 3189

We both work but my husband is more likely to stay home if something comes up. And he earns less than I do. But that's just the nature of our jobs plus our titles.

Alissa_Sal's picture
Joined: 06/29/06
Posts: 6427

I agree that it's all about perception, and I think that part of it is that in some companies, it's harder to quantify productivity and easier to quantify butts in seats. I know that in my job, as long as things are running smoothly and my clients are happy, I am doing like 95% of of my job. I do have some reports and whatnot that I have to get out every month, but that is a small part of my job. Most of it is actively working to maintain relationships with my clients, make sure that they are happy and thier accounts are running smoothly. That's kind of a hard thing to really quantify unless my clients aren't happy or thier accounts are blowing up. Basically, it's easy to see when I'm doing a bad job, but harder to see when I'm doing a good job.

Luckily, in my department at least, the supervisors get this, and we're all salaried anyway, plus we have flex time built in every month, so our company culture is much more conducive to a working mom's lifestyle. We were actually voted one of the top companies for working moms by Working Mom magazine a couple of years ago. I think that if the culture of a company is to be more flexible on time and working from home, that really benefits working parents, especially in dual income families. I almost always take off the time to stay home with T when he's sick or take him to the doctor's office. But part of that is that it is soooo much easier for me. If DH has to take time off, he has to get a sub. I can just dial in from home if need be. Luckily for me, that's not too frowned upon in my company.

Joined: 06/04/07
Posts: 1368

Interesting read on gender gap: http://citeseerx.ist.psu.edu/viewdoc/download?doi=10.1.1.160.4368&rep=rep1&type=pdf

at least some of the remaining pay gap is surely tied to the gender division of
labor in the home, both directly through its effect on women's labor force attachment and
indirectly through its impact on the strength of statistical discrimination against women. Women still retain primary responsibility for housework and child care in most American families. However, this pattern has been changing as families respond to rising labor market opportunities for women that increase the opportunity cost of such arrangements. Further, policies that facilitate the integration of work and family responsibilities, both voluntary and government mandated, have become increasingly prevalent in recent years. Employers are likely to continue to expand such policies as they respond to the shifting composition of the work force and a desire to retain employees in whom they have made substantial investments. In the longer run, the increasing availability of such policies will make it easier for women to combine work and family, and also for men to take on a greater share of household tasks

They do equate the typical time off women generally take from their work. They also mention productivity in the workplace because of some stereotyped gender roles that may play a factor in the gap as well as the public policy shifting in the '90's mandating more single parents on welfare to participate in employment activities. Interesting read. This was done in 2000, so I wonder what they found for the last decade.