Working remotely is more popular than ever before, and many workers in the Washington D.C. metro area value the flexibility that it offers. Unfortunately, there are also potential downsides. Employees who prefer clocking in remotely to avoid certain types of in-person workplace discrimination may still have to deal with discriminatory behavior related to remote work.
Remote work is on the rise
Upwork estimates that around 36 million people in the United States will be working remotely by 2025. Many of these workers will be women and minorities, some of whom choose remote work in an effort to limit their exposure to workplace discrimination. This attitude toward remote work can further be seen in HR leaders’ responses toward leaving remote work and returning to the office, with men preferring this option 12.5% more than do women. Compared to 75% of white workers, 87% of Asian workers and 81% of Black workers also prefer hybrid work over being fully in-person.
Barriers in remote work
Women and minorities tend to prefer remote work because it limits the amount of microaggressions or other discriminatory conduct they typically encounter during a workday. However, it also comes with certain invisible barriers. Consider just a few issues remote workers face:
- Employers who wrongly perceive remote workers as being less dedicated.
- Hybrid meetings with some workers physically present and others joining via video create a sense of discord.
- Employers who prefer mentoring in-person employees while ignoring or downplaying remote workers’ needs for support.
Identifying instances of workplace discrimination while working remotely can be a challenge. When a victim of discrimination realizes what is going on, he or she may not even be sure what steps to take next. While every situation is different, many employees who suffer from workplace discrimination in the Washington D.C. metro area may find that holding employers responsible through legal avenues such as workplace discrimination complaints or lawsuits can help them secure the relief they need.