High-tech’s di­ver­sity glitch


Re Nabeel Ahmed’s High-Tech Con­tra­dic­tions (NOW, Oc­to­ber 11-17). For the record, I work in tech­nol­ogy and I am a priv­i­leged white male. It’s clear there are many chal­lenges we face as a city and em­ploy­ment sec­tor. Ad­dress­ing those chal­lenges will re­quire civil dis­course and com­pro­mise. This ar­ti­cle was not help­ful. In­stead the writer chose to un­der­score di­vi­sions and cherry-pick stats to suit his agenda.

To say that Toronto is “more seg­re­gated by race than it has ever been” ig­nores real progress we’ve made over decades. Point­ing out that Indige­nous peo­ple are un­der­rep­re­sented in tech ig­nores the fact that they are grossly un­der­rep­re­sented in all forms of em­ploy­ment.

I have worked in both the pub­lic and the pri­vate sec­tor and found that racial­ized com­mu­ni­ties form a fast­grow­ing part of the work­force in tech­nol­ogy. Large en­ter­prises in par­tic­u­lar are tak­ing af­fir­ma­tive ac­tion to of­fer op­por­tu­ni­ties to pre­vi­ously marginal­ized groups.

If we are to con­tinue to make our so­ci­ety more fair and in­clu­sive, we need to tackle the chal­lenges we face in a way that doesn’t po­lar­ize us into war­ring camps.

Tom Som­merville Toronto

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