Friday, July 13, 2012

Employment Discrimination Prevalent among Overweight Women

In a recent study, it was found out that overweight women are more likely to suffer employment discrimination when trying to get a job and be paid less than their slimmer colleagues.

Generally, overweight women are prone to health problems such as heart ailments and diabetes. And, aside from the health risks, they are also struggling to overcome the discrimination they are facing during employment.

Researchers at the University of Manchester and Monash University, Melbourne concluded that overweight women are more likely to experience discrimination when hunting for a job up to hiring and employment decision.

The said study involved 95 people acting as employers, who were shown different resumes and headshot photos of job applicants. The researchers then asked the “employers” to rate the applicants based on their employability, starting salary, and potential for job advancement.

The researchers concealed the true reason for the study to the “employers” to avoid unfair decision. The resumes shown by the researchers to the employers have equivalent skills, experience, and education as well.

The employers did not know that the photos attached to the resumes were photos of the same six women before and after weight loss surgery.

The study thereby concluded that overweight women received more negative responses on employment, predicted success, possibility to receive higher salary, perfect employment rating, and rank order of preference as compared to other slimmer applicants.

According to the study’s lead author, Dr. Kerry O’Brien, they found that strong obesity discrimination was prevalent all over job selection criteria like starting salary, leadership skills, and possibility of selecting an obese candidate for the job.

Apparently, the problem regarding the prevailing employment discrimination against overweight women needs to be given proper attention. Therefore, to reduce such prejudices, a California employment discrimination lawyer suggested that comprehensive policies should be introduced into the labor industry.