What If I Am Discriminated Against?

Question to Ask the Workplace Doctors about interns and discrimination.

What if a new workforce intern gets dirty looks and ignored at work, and they are new on the job, and they know they are part of the Workforce Investment Act Economic Stimulus Training Program. What should they do?

Signed, Discriminated

Dear Discriminated:

Get over it. Dirty looks and ignored? I guess it is possible to be ignored part of the day and get dirty looks the rest, and I can empathize with your feeling of not being welcomed and wanted. However, might it not be better to patiently soak up all the training available than to see yourself as victim?

Ask questions. Do well what you are assigned. Be generous with thank yous.Be cheerful and friendly. Don’t gossip about dirty looks and/or being ignored. This is a time to make benefit from Stimulus Training. Of course, from the little you say, I can’t know if indeed you are discriminated due to sex, race, religion, age, national origin, or disability, but dirty looks and ignored are not legal cause for a discrimination complaint.

I would not bypass your supervisor complaining about discrimination, but I would do my best to make her/his job easier by being a willing trainee. Rather than focus on yourself, what might happen if you imagined what you would do to make your workplace more profitable; cutting wasted supplies, time, energy? Have you even thought of that once since you’ve been there? I expect that you have.

Does this make sense? Wherever you work, you won’t go wrong with a can-do attitude. Working together with hands, head, and heart takes and makes big WEGOS. In short that means when you think about delivering quality and teamwork, it is a mutually good feeling.

William Gorden