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  • Changing your name and hiring discrimination - 06/09/2015

    Philosophy Professor Patricia Illingworth of Northeastern University said she thinks it’s okay for applicants to modify their name to avoid implicit bias “to get their foot in the door,” but considers this type of behavior uncourageous.

    “My concern with lying or gaming the system by misrepresenting your name and cultural background is you maintain the status quo when really what we need is an overhaul,” Illingworth said. “We need a recognition of the value of diversity and multiculturalism.”

    Illingworth conceded that in some workplaces implicit bias could be very difficult to overcome, which is why legal mechanisms are sometimes necessary. Affirmative action, an outcome of the 1960s Civil Rights Movement, is an example of a policy where organizations engage in efforts to ensure applicants are treated equally “without regard to race, creed, or national origin.”

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