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Report finds marketers still facing discrimination and exclusion in Western Australia

Report finds marketers still facing discrimination and exclusion in Western Australia
Credit: Edith Cowan University

Western Australia's marketing sector is still faced with issues of sexism, harassment, and marginalization, with a new report by Edith Cowan University (ECU) finding that as many as one-in-four marketers have experienced discrimination in the workplace.

The report, undertaken on behalf of the Western Australian Marketing Association, surveyed 573 workers in the Western Australian marketing sector and found that three-in-ten agency workers feel they are not treated with respect in their workplace.

Formal reporting on discrimination remains low, with only 42% of participants formally reporting their discrimination experiences.

The report also dealt with the issue of exclusion, finding that 61% of male respondents felt excluded, compare with 38% of female respondents. Some groups, such as heterosexuals and those without disabilities, expressed lower levels of inclusion, while Anglo and English-speaking respondents reported the highest levels of feeling excluded.

ECU Lecturer Ms Melissa Fong-Emmerson and Senior Lecturer Dr. Ashlee Morgan found that gender plays a significant role in shaping attitudes towards diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI). 83% of female respondents said a diverse and inclusive workplace is important, compared to only 68% of males who share the same sentiment.

While non-binary/gender diverse respondents represent less than 1% of the sample population, they unanimously agree on the significance of DEI.

Age is another factor influencing perceptions, findings show 88% of under 35s agreeing that DEI at work as crucial, this figure reduces to 67% among 35- to 44-year-olds. Encouragingly, 92% of respondents over 45 years affirm the importance of DEI; however, it is important to note that they make up roughly 1 in 10 of the sample population.

"The study's findings uncovered sobering statistics and firsthand experiences around discrimination and lack of inclusion, providing a data-driven foundation for the industry to take meaningful action," said Ms Fong-Emmerson.

"By amplifying the voices of the participants on these critical issues, the study provides a platform for the marketing community to prioritize commitment to diversity and inclusion. This can drive tangible improvements and actions, moving towards a genuine, long-term authentic commitment to inclusive workplaces. We hope this will ignite meaningful lasting change in the marketing industry."

Improving diversity and inclusion in the workplace

The report makes seven key recommendations for organizations to improve diversity and in their workplace, they are: improved experience in agencies, strengthening , improving transparency in , and adopting inclusive recruitment strategies.

Dr. Morgan noted that the recommendations made in the report were intended to facilitate meaningful action across the WA marketing sector and said, "A diverse workplace does not equate to an inclusive . It is well overdue for the industry to reflect our diverse society and ensure that everyone feels included at work."

More information: Report: … ion/2024-dei-report/

Citation: Report finds marketers still facing discrimination and exclusion in Western Australia (2024, June 10) retrieved 19 June 2024 from
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