Using the Lens of Intersectionality
A lot of behind the scenes work goes into our Woke Wednesdays at Binc. First, we choose a topic and then get volunteers from the committee to help research, facilitate, and guide the overall project. Shout outs to the AMAZING Bincers who participated in this one.
For our April Woke Wednesday we landed on intersectionality as our topic. If you are unfamiliar with that term here’s a quick definition: “The interconnected nature of social categorizations such as race, class, and gender as they apply to a given individual or group, regarded as creating overlapping and interdependent systems of discrimination or disadvantage.”
The concept of intersectionality was coined by Kimberle Crenshaw, a professor at UCLA Law (GO BRUINS!). Crenshaw wrote a paper to address the consequences that arise when we treat gender and race as mutually exclusive categories of analysis and experience.
The concept of intersectionality equips us with a way to think about identity and how it collides with power. The idea here is that we all have multiple factors that make us who we are, in some cases an aspect of our identity may privilege us and in other cases, it might put us in a marginalized position. There are multidimensional obstacles that underrepresented individuals might be facing, so it is important to maintain a lens of intersectionality while fighting injustices.
We practiced using the lens of intersectionality by discussing the pay gap that women face in the workforce. On average women face a pay gap when compared to white men, but it is important to dive deeper and acknowledge that women of color face even more of a disadvantage compared to white women. As recruiters, it is important to keep this in mind as we should be advocates for pushing for equal and fair pay for our women of color candidates and other marginalized groups who are at a disadvantage.
This Woke Wednesday was special and taught me a lot, I was able to hear stories from my fellow Bincers and learn about how aspects of their identities intersect. It was a reminder that everyone has their struggles that they face on a day to day that might not be directly identifiable. Intersectionality gives us the mind frame to acknowledge that oppressions are interlinked and truly cannot be solved alone.
Binc is truly a special place to work. They provide us with a platform to have open discussions on important topics like these. We are constantly learning and growing in the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion space. I am happy to be a part of it!
Woke Wednesday, WW for short is a monthly event hosted by our Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) committee; it is an open forum that allows Bincers to discuss topics that surround the themes of both diversity and inclusion. Even though some topics we choose are not directly tied to recruiting, they always tie into the tech industry as a whole.