Woman reveals how she was discriminated at her plumbing job interview: ‘I was expecting a man’

·3-min read
 (Getty Images/iStockphoto)
(Getty Images/iStockphoto)

A woman has revealed how she faced discrimination during an interview for a plumbing job, as the receptionist told her that she was “expecting” the applicant “to be a man”.

In a recent post shared to the Subreddit “Antiwork,” u/bisqueef_munchies posted a screenshots of a plumbing job she applied to via Indeed and the emails she sent to job’s company.

According to the first screenshot of the post, the woman was contacted by someone through Indeed, who asked her if she was interested in a job as a Plumbing Mechanic, which required at least two years of more of plumbing experience.

The woman noted how the job had a salary of $24 to $34 an hour, according to the Indeed posting.

In another screenshot, the Reddit user shared a follow-up email that she sent to the plumbing company. She said that after submitting her application, she attended the interview, where the receptionist made some inappropriate comments.

“I arrive on time for my interview and introduced myslef to the receptionist, [name redacted],” the email read. “She said to me, ‘Oh, I was expecting a man.’”

The original poster (OP for short) recalled how the receptionist then “handed [her]” the application and let her know with whom she would be interviewing.

After escorting the job applicant to the conference room, the receptionist looked at her application and claimed that there was “no way that [the Reddit poster] would be paid” the wage she requested.

“She read on the application that I had written $24 as a wage I would accept,” the message continued. “She told me there is no way that I would be paid $24, as I did not have enough experience as a plumber.”

“I pointed out that my resume clearly states I have been a plumber’s helper for five years,” she continued.

The woman then said that she’s enrolled in an apprenticeship program for plumbing and that she “met all the qualifications on the job listing”. She also explained how the comapny, which was unnamed, had been the one who “contacted [her], not the other way around”.

The job candidate told the receptionist that $24 was “the lowest end of the wage” scale, as the salary was listed to up to $34 an hour on Indeed. The receptionist then said that she would “run it by the powers that be” and “get back to” the woman on the topic.

However, she said that she was “not offered a position”.

As of 19 April, the Reddit post has been upvoted more than 12,500 times, with readers emphasising that the receptionist had a biassed and discriminatory behaviour towards the female job applicant.

“[I] am a plumber and the gist of it is that a lot of older generation types control the trades, in general,” one wrote. “With that comes a mindset of women can’t physically hang with the boys…With that being said I’ve worked with women who can pick up a standing radiator just like any other dude, or throw up a length of four-inch black pipe like anybody else. Old school mentality will be the death of this line of work.”

“This has both gender discrimination AND the general f*** you bait-and-switch job listing,” another wrote. “OP would have needed to stick around to get ‘high turnover,’ ‘racial discrimination,’ and ‘horrible customers’ to get bingo on her card.”

Others expressed how outside of the plumbing business, women are often judged on the job due to their gender.

“I spent a lot of years in auto repair shops and the few women I worked with were extremely competent but had everyone from lot attendants to service writers explaining shit to them constantly,” a comment reads. “Now that I work in tech, it’s pretty much the same story. As an insider, it is pretty obvious why there aren’t more women in these trades.”

The Independent has reached out to u/bisqueef_munchies for comment.

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