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How Women and Non-Binary People in Tech are really doing

The importance of promoting gender equality

Diverse team come with a variety of advantages, such as having a fair representation of gender identities, a variety of viewpoints, as well as insights that will enhance your business or product.

Promoting gender equality in the technology field is important even though the career is genderless. In STEM careers, there should be a greater representation of women, non-binary individuals, and transgender individuals. It is important to note that a diverse team comes with a variety of advantages, such as having a fair representation of gender identities, a variety of viewpoints, as well as insights that will enhance your business or product. As stated in McKinsey & Company's "Diversity Wins: How Inclusion Matters" 2020 report, the latest analysis reaffirms the strong business case for both gender diversity and ethnic and cultural diversity in corporate leadership—and shows that this business case continues to strengthen. The most diverse companies are now more likely than ever to outperform less diverse peers on profitability.

One of the reasons that gender equality is not fully achieved in the technology sector is that "30% of young people choose not to participate in STEM fields because of discrimination," according to stemwomen.com's LGBTQ+ in Stem 2021 report. A mere 5.31% of women work in STEM fields, while 1.42% are non-binary and 1% are openly transgender. Several shocking facts are revealed in Forbes' article "Startling Research Reveals How Women And Non-Binary People Are REALLY Doing," published in 2022.

  • 90% experience some form of discrimination.

  • 100% report instances of harassment.

  • 63% report a sense of belonging, with Black respondents reporting a particularly low sense of belonging.

  • 55% feel they are being paid fairly for their work.

There are ways we can help change the narrative and take action. Check out AnitaB.org, which inspires and guides women non-binary in computing or organizations that view technology innovation as a strategic imperative and join their movement. We can also ensure an inclusive work environment by using unisex bathrooms and preferred pronouns in email signatures. Educating students early about technology will also help to grow their interest in technology. Last, by not least, gender equality can be achieved by having a workplace that supports and expresses the needs of women and non-binary people in technology.

The following is a contributed article by Rhonisha Ridgeway, MAKERS Women's Social Media Coordinator.

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