Survey: 100% of women expect to face discrimination at work
Almost every Vietnamese woman in an Institute for Workers and Trade Unions poll conducted earlier this year think gender will count against them at some point during their career.
The manufacturing and construction industries were singled out by young women in the survey as two of the worst offending segments in the economy and are ripe for change, said the survey.
What is even more startling— many foreign sector companies are the worst offenders, said respondents.
Vu Thị Lan had just turned 30 when she received a notice of employment termination this past April from her employer at a manufacturing plant in the Quang Minh Industrial Zone, a position she had held for nearly a decade without complaint.
There was no performance related reason given for her termination, Ms Lan told a reporter from the Vietnam News Service, just a vague ill-defined reference to the fact the company was undergoing a restructuring of sorts.
She subsequently applied for another assembly line job at a foreign sector plant in the Bac Thang Long IZ, but was flatly turned away on the basis that the company only hired workers aged 18-30.
The survey follows a series of reports that show women face a higher risk of harassment and discrimination at work. Earlier this year a Hanoi Employment Service Centre study found that most women experienced sexual harassment at work.
Statistics released by the Centre indicate that 90% of all registered workers filing for unemployment in the capital city of Vietnam during the first quarter of 2017 were women aged 35 and over.
Nguyen Thị Kim Loan of the Centre, acknowledged to the Vietnam News Service, that women aged 30 and over that previously worked for foreign sector companies in metropolitan area industrial zones account for most unemployed workers in Hanoi.
Regarding the growing discriminatory practices of foreign sector manufacturers, Nguyen Dinh Thang, deputy chair of the Hanoi Industrial Zone and Processing Zone Trade Union said it would take female chief executive officers to turn the situation around.
Mr Thang suggested that surveys he has reviewed in depth showed that the most senior executives of manufacturing companies needed to take responsibility for changing attitudes to effectuate positive organizational changes.
He recommended that the government and the business community should stop the incessant push for quantity of foreign sector businesses investing in the country and start focusing on the quality of multinationals allowed to operate in the country.
Are these businesses as exemplified by their chief executives, really the type of companies that Vietnam wants, is a question that should be more thoroughly investigated prior to a certificate authorizing them to enter commerce in Vietnam is issued.
In addition, it is incumbent upon male executives of foreign sector companies to understand their massive responsibility to eliminate the unconscious biases that discriminate against women and how they can use their positions of authority to change the culture in their organizations, he noted./.