Reply To: Transitioning while working

DeeAnn Hopings

An important thing to remember here is that for a LONG, LONG time the careers and women, minorities, lesbian and gays have been messed with in spite of whatever anti-discrimination laws may be in place. Isn’t it something like roughly 2/3 of the states have no laws in place protecting LGBT folks?

For a time, I was a supervisor for a group of engineers and technicians. It was continually impressed upon me and my peers that one of our primary functions was to eliminate (or at least minimize) liability for the company. This meant many things: adhering to the appropriate safety procedures for potentially dangerous operational and maintenance tasks, designing machinery with all of the safety aspects in mind, fair, documented and implemented procedures regarding raises, bonuses and promotions by race and gender, fair, documented and implemented procedures regarding non-performance definitions and disciplinary measures and a number of other items. On the surface it seems all straightforward and above board. However, as a lot of these indicators and judgements are very subjective in nature, the power of words comes into play. It may all seem above board, but subtleties, tone and choice of words can come together to create a particular slant.

I wouldn’t throw out a blanket and say that all HR folks are suspect. I’ve known some very good ones as well as some bricks, but we have to remember that they are in an in between position. The good ones you try to support and work with. The bricks you work around…

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