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Author Topic: OT: ABC 7 News Special - What's in a Name?  (Read 4171 times)

MilTown

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OT: ABC 7 News Special - What's in a Name?
« on: July 23, 2007, 08:51:00 AM »
Did anyone else see the previews for an ABC 7 News (chicago) special report? The commercial was short, but I guess it's about how a persons name as it appears on a resume determines if they will get a call back or not. In the preview they flash a Marquette graduate's resume. Does anyone know what this is about?

ZiggysFryBoy

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Re: OT: ABC 7 News Special - What's in a Name?
« Reply #1 on: July 23, 2007, 10:10:57 AM »
just a guess, but it probably has to do with people with "white" names vs. people with "black" or "other ethnic" names getting calls back for jobs.

MilTown

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Re: OT: ABC 7 News Special - What's in a Name?
« Reply #2 on: July 23, 2007, 11:28:07 AM »
You are probably right. I just hope the MU education is shown in a positive light and is not the "lesser" qualified candidate or something.

spiral97

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Re: OT: ABC 7 News Special - What's in a Name?
« Reply #3 on: July 24, 2007, 01:00:45 PM »
You were right.. it was about how resumes with names that sound african american may be unfairly discarded.
The marquette connection wasn't anything negative, just that this seemed to have happened to someone who graduated from marquette and applied to target with a seemingly sterling resume only to never even get a call for an interview.
http://abclocal.go.com/wls/story?section=special_coverage&id=5504789
Quote
July 23, 2007 - Studies show that if you have a name that sounds African-American you may find it more difficult to find a job than someone who appears, on paper, to be white. Several women in Milwaukee say they believe that's what happened to them and they are suing to try to prove it.

The three women in our story all recently graduated college with strong grade point averages, activities and experience. They thought they would easily find jobs. Instead they allege they found discrimination. They filed a complaint with the EEOC that eventually turned into a lawsuit. It's taken six years, but the case is set to go to trial next month.

Chicago native Cherise Easley has a fulfilling job in Milwaukee teaching young African-American students. She is about to get her doctorate. She has worked as an educator since graduating from Marquette University more than six years ago, but it was not her first career choice.

Easley first applied for work with the Target corporation. But despite what she says is a sterling resume, that she says they claimed to be impressed with, they never scheduled an interview. Her resume includes membership in an African-American sorority and the NAACP.

"I was devastated, because I was told if I go to school, if I get a good education, if I do the right things, if I stay out of trouble, then I have a fair opportunity like everyone else," said Easley.

Cherise and two of her college friends all applied for Target jobs at the same time. All had strong resumes. All are African-Americans. And Target passed on all of them.

Kalisha White now works as a top executive with a major corporation in Atlanta. She says when Target failed to even return her repeated calls she got suspicious. So, she says, she sent them a less impressive resume with no African-American references and the name Sarah instead of Kalisha.

"I didn't want to think that people were still discriminating in this day and age, so that's why I created the resume, just to find out," said White.

She says the results confirmed her fears.

"The white person got a call just like that and Kalisha couldn't get the time of day," said Dennis McBride, EEOC senior attorney.

The women filed a class action suit against Target alleging racial discrimination in the company's hiring process. Their attorney cites a 2003 study co-authored by University of Chicago Professor Marianne Bertrand. It is titled "Are Emily and Brendan More Employable than Lakisha and Jamal?" and it measures the call-back rate for interviews on resumes sent with black and white sounding names.

"Marianne Bertrand found that if you had a black sounding name you will receive 50 percent fewer call-backs," McBride said.

Bertrand is expected to testify at the Target trial.

But the company says in a statement, "Target did not take any action toward any of the...applicants based upon their race." The statement also points out the appeals court did not find Target broke any laws.

The women believe otherwise.

"At the time I was very hurt by their treatments. So that's what I want the outcome to be, that individuals will be judged based on actual job qualifications and not their race," Kalisha White said.

Their attorney says the women are now all leaders in their fields, employees Target should have welcomed. They say, even though they have all moved on, they are also confident of winning at trial.

Cherise Easley hopes the case makes a difference not just for her but for society.

"If we teach our children that if you come to school, work hard, get your education, you can make a better for life for your family, and there's equal opportunities for all people here in America, then we need to stand by what we say," said Easley.

If they win their case, the women who filed the suit could be awarded about $100,000 each. But they all say sending a message about discrimination is more important.

A Target spokesperson said the company prohibits discrimination and is confident they will prevail at trial.
Once a warrior always a warrior.. even if the feathers must now come with a beak.

MilTown

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Re: OT: ABC 7 News Special - What's in a Name?
« Reply #4 on: July 25, 2007, 09:56:59 AM »
Is not receiving a call back after submitting a resume considered discrimination??? I would imagine that a company like target receives thousands of resumes for each position. It's not unrealistic to think that they would not give some a call back. Also, it's going to interesting to see if the prosecution can clearly define what a "black sounding" name is. That is such a vague term. Very interesting case. I hope they do a follow up.

muwarrior87

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Re: OT: ABC 7 News Special - What's in a Name?
« Reply #5 on: July 25, 2007, 03:02:12 PM »
Laquita, Lafanda, Marquetta (yes, my g/f had a girl at her camp named that), D'marcus, Jamarcus...there are names that are "black sounding".  Where you draw the line idk...Antonio could be but also could be Italian...so maybe a mobster then...

MilTown

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Re: OT: ABC 7 News Special - What's in a Name?
« Reply #6 on: July 25, 2007, 03:31:47 PM »
Ok, you may think those names are "black sounding" but my point is that it is subjective. What you think is "black sounding" might not be what someone else thinks. It will be hard for the prosecution to define a "black sounding" name, and to prove that the person making the interviewing decisions purposely rejected a resume based on their assumption that the candidate was black. I'm speaking from a legal point of view. I think that name discrimination occurs all the time and that more than likely it happened in this case, but proving it in a court of law might be troublesome.

augoman

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Re: OT: ABC 7 News Special - What's in a Name?
« Reply #7 on: July 25, 2007, 07:00:05 PM »
I think 'miltown' is dead on.  Proving discrimination in a case of this type is going to be tough, unless all applicants had identical resumes, identical experience, identical grades from identical schools, etc.  Almost sounds 'frivolous' to me.

ZiggysFryBoy

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Re: OT: ABC 7 News Special - What's in a Name?
« Reply #8 on: July 25, 2007, 08:28:32 PM »
I think 'miltown' is dead on.  Proving discrimination in a case of this type is going to be tough, unless all applicants had identical resumes, identical experience, identical grades from identical schools, etc.  Almost sounds 'frivolous' to me.

the girl from marquette DID do just that, she sent Target the same resume with a "white" name and got a call back.  Nothing with her real "black" name.

ilovefreeway

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Re: OT: ABC 7 News Special - What's in a Name?
« Reply #9 on: July 25, 2007, 08:52:03 PM »
MilTown is right about the proof problems, but if they have anymore of this "the girl from marquette DID do just that, she sent Target the same resume with a "white" name and got a call back.  Nothing with her real "black" name." then they may have something.

muwarrior87

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Re: OT: ABC 7 News Special - What's in a Name?
« Reply #10 on: July 25, 2007, 08:58:01 PM »
it may also depends on who reviewed the resumes and how many came in when they were submitted.  If a lot of resumes were submitted one time, then maybe it's more likely she'd get a callback if there weren't as many ppl the other time.

MilTown

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Re: OT: ABC 7 News Special - What's in a Name?
« Reply #11 on: July 26, 2007, 09:12:27 AM »
There are a ton of potential issues with the case. Another thing to consider is that it may not have been a real person who rejected the resume. I know many companies have computer programs that weed out resumes based on keywords and other parameters. Many times the companies have a resume template on their website where you enter your resume, or the program can search a standard word or standard text file. Can you sue a computer program??

muwarrior87

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Re: OT: ABC 7 News Special - What's in a Name?
« Reply #12 on: July 26, 2007, 03:10:44 PM »
Can you sue a computer program??

Last time i checked, no...but this is America and you can sue pretty much anything.  ;)

FrennA

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Re: OT: ABC 7 News Special - What's in a Name?
« Reply #13 on: July 26, 2007, 03:45:46 PM »

Maybe not the computer program but the programmer or the employer of the  programmer.

 

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