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Diversity in the Workplace


"Dialogue in the Workplace"

I. Introduction
A. Audience Survey
B. Name, demographic, ethnic background, expectations from workshop, favorite ethnic food?
C. Personal Bio: Sal
Background: Ravenwood (Morris, MN) staff for physically challenged since summer of 1999, former Alpha & Omega (Chi-Alpha) Campus Christian Ministry co-founder/adviser from 1998-2001, Morris Literacy Project Coordinator: ESL since Fall of 2004, and COPC: Community Dialogue Series Co-Chair since 2005.


A. Understanding Culture & People Workshop (April of 2005) Review
(Ice Cream exercise)
B. Share Travel Experience
(examples of not knowing the language)
C. Common Ground-"Interest"
1. Favorite Ethnic Food
2. Name meaning

A. Questions
B. Benefits (see down below) of Diversity
1. Minnesota Twins
Countries represented in the Minnesota Twins baseball team?

Contact: Sal Monteagudo
109 E. 3rd St.
Morris, MN 56267

Rough Draft

II. Some Goals of Multicultural Diversity of Praire Community Services:

-handle the various cultural challenges in the group home setting:
-why it's important to be culturally sensitive in the workplace?
Answer:...because of the increasing growing (e.g. Somolian, Hmong, etc...) diverse workplace environment. Also, PCS' vision states...Factually, companies across the nation have been sued (e.g. Jennio in Wilmar) because of racial/prejudice/discrimination/religious issues in the workplace that is costing money on these lawsuits.
Lastly, it is very beneficial for your daily life in this increasing multicultural world (church, family, and overall community anywhere or everywhere, etc...)
-what are the assets of a mulicultural diverse workforce?

  • new unique different perspective in the work enivronment (e.g. different ethnic food, morals/values, stories of survival, etc..) that you can learn or even teach each other
  • other lists from UMMAlpha

    Workshop "Real-Work" Scenario Exercise:

    Q: Have you ever felt like a "minority" (e.g. "a sore thumb that sticks out", "an outsider", etc...)?
    Q: Have you ever been to another non-English speaking country (e.g. COPC "icebreaker")?
    *Dennis Lindor's trip to Ireland
    A: Jot down your experience(s) and list how you felt? *ideas and other exercises related to this can be found through Understand Culture & People Workshop 4/05

    Q: Of the audience present, can anyone share of any diversity related stories/experience you have both positive or negative?
    A: Me (examples down below)

  • Jewish (e.g. Vegan/Vegetarign/Wheat-Free co-workers overall) co-workers can't eat any pork and the menu for today says ham
  • A consumer's family member came in and made a racist remark using the "N-word" ignorantly torwards a co-worker who is African American
  • -a youth I worked w/ called a friend of mine ignorantly asked "Are you a N-word?"
  • A co-worker makes an offensive statement...
    "I'm tired of doing cotton-pickin' (see racial slur database) work around the house"
    "They probably don't have sanitary conditions in their homecountry in Asia" "I'm tired of these affirmative action laws, we are all created equal and should be treated equally"

    Work Setting and Real Life Action Plan

    -Any questions that may come up after this, please contact your supervisor with any of your concerns. Then they can contact me and I'll do my best to give an answer or response.
    -Ask your co-worker about their ethnic-background, which they are most of the time happy to share about

  • "What is your favorite ethnic food?
  • "What is unique about your cultural background?
  • "Have a ethnic focus theme each month (e.g. cook particular ethnic food-German, Norwegian, Mexican, Italian, Chinese/Asian, etc...)

    -What am I going to do now with what I learned today to apply not only in my workplace, but my daily life? *asking questions is a conversation generator to build a better working relationship environment

  • take advantage of the cultural opportunities in your area (e.g. newspaper) or community, state (Human Resources Professionals of Minnesota), etc..
  • research on the internet of ethnic cultural backgrounds that you have an interest or a question about

    *Note above have been taken from What Are The Components Of A Successful Diversity Initiative?-Society of Human Resources Management

    Other Resources

    I'll be taking a special course at Ridgewater on April 7th 2005, which I'll share my notes soon!
    *note: class was postponed

  • Guidelines for Culturally Competent Organizations, Second Edition-May 2004 from Department of Human Services-Minnesota

  • a handout from my PCS CEO
    *get a copy of Table of Index
    What is cultural competence?
    Cultural competence or culturally competent is the ability and the will to respond to the unique needs of an individual client that arise from the client’s culture and the ability to use the person’s culture as a resource or tool to assist with the intervention and help meet the person’s needs
    I. Policy and Overview: Why Cultural Competence? Culture is not just race and ethnicity
    Organizations must be careful not to view culture only as race or ethnicity. Many groups, such as the poor, homeless, disabled, gay/lesbian/bisexual/transgender, and immigrants/refugees exhibit distinct cultural characteristics, which may present special service delivery issues. Those who are deaf not only often use a distinct language but also manifest a “deaf culture.” Poverty imposes demands that can manifest as distinct worldviews that are cultural in nature. While socio-economic status is independent of race/ethnicity, it has culture-like characteristics for its members and engenders culture-like responses from others. For example, a study of parents describing how families had been treated by child-serving agencies found that low-income parents of all races were almost three-times more likely than others to describe experiences in which they felt they were not treated with respect by service providers. [35] Appendix A: Legal Requirements
    Child Welfare and Child Protection
    "Cultural competence is incorporated into Minnesota statutes governing service delivery in areas such as adoption and post-placement..."
    -Minnesota Department of Human Services
    Appendix C: Diversity Among Five Major Racial/Ethnic Groups
    Appendix D: DHS Multilingual Telephone Service
    Linguistic Competence

    Pre-Interview Summary of Sal's Background

    " I was born in 1977 to parents that immigrated (early 70's) from the Philippines to the U.S. The Philippines is the 3rd largest English speaking nation in the world because of America's occupation after the Spanish-American War in the late 1800's. Even though English was taught in the schools, my parents still had a hard time adjusting to the cultural changes immigrating to the U.S. For example, my parents faced some ridicule in the workplace (dad-accountant for the Minneapolis Transit "bus" Company & mom-clean crew at Holiday Inn and now her present job as clerk for the Minnesota State Revenue Service). This cultural challenges actually inspired me to do what I'm doing right now-volunteer coordinator for the Minnesota Literacy Council: ESL & GED Classes Wednesday evenings (6-9p)...

    My dad has shared stories from growing up during WWII (born 1938), which I've grown to appreciate and understand as I get older. I had a racist and hate attitude towards the Japanese as a youth, which I've grown out of as I became "less ignorant" and "culturally educated" while at UMM (95'-99")...

    I went to UMM because of the academic challenges it was noted for through endless hours researching at a nearby library in East St. Paul. I thought Morris would be like the "Dukes of Hazard", which my knowledge of small towns was very small back then. I grew to like the small-rural community as I got involved with a local church (Morris Community Church) and got to know community residents in a more personal basis. I remember one trip I took with some college students to a farm outside of Starbuck. We took pictures with horses, cows, sheep, etc.. The "locals" couldn't understand why "we" cityfolks were so excited! I started to appreciate Morris my later years in college and decided to stay because of many reasons: lack of cultural resources that I wanted to help be a resource person (e.g. Blandin Foundation, UMM International Student, Morris Community Ed services, etc..), spiritual growth, the "lay" back life, low standard of living, etc.
    Working at Ravenwood Home (a.k.a. Hoffman Home when I first started in 1999)after graduation) has been an awesome experience! I've grown (spiritual-love for those the "Bible" considered the "least of these"; educational-understand the mentally/physically challenged population; occupational-learn my "gifts"; etc...) a lot as an individual, which I look at this as a season in my life.

    The importance of ethnic diversity is very important because of the growing and changing global society coming to rural Minnesota. For example, Minnesota has been a place for many refugees escaping their war-torn countries: Somalia, Laos/Thailand, Sudan, Bosnia/Serbia/Yugoslavia, etc... We (staff) can all learn (e.g. health tips, lifestyle, wisdom in life, faith encouragement, etc...) from each other while the residents benefit too! Each diverse ethnic group has something to contribute to this field, which we won't know until we ask! We need to learn from one another as I have through the years in Morris. For example, I've learn about the Norwegian foods, which I've grown to love. As I look back in my 7+ ongoing years w/Prairie Community Servcies, I"ve grown to understand and appreciate working in this field. The experiences I've gained here not only helps me grow, but I'm hoping that I'm also uniquely and positively influencing the people (co-workers and residents) around me. We (staff) all have something to bring to this workplace environment, which we sometimes don't understand until we step back. We (staff) are here more than for a paycheck to pay our day to day ongoing bills. Life is more than that. I feel God has personally given us gifts (e.g. resources, natural/spiritual, etc..) that we are blessed with and it's our duty as "His people" to offer to those who are "less unfortunate". The diversity (not just only ethnic) amongst the PCS employees is very important to the success of what we do overall. "

    ...more later!

    Show & Tell

    I've been able to "Share & Tell" about my culture in various settings:

    -Morris Community Ed's "Global Expo" w/ elementary school students
    -Individual from church invited me to her classroom at St. Mary's Elementary School
    -UMM Student invited me to share at his school in Carlos (by Alex)
    -One & One outings w/ youth to many events (e.g. Hmong New Year, Filipino Day, Hip Hop Breakdancing, etc...)
    -InterVarsity Christian Fellowship Spring of 2006

    Location of Workshop: First Lutheran Church of Alexandria

  • Goodnews Morris: Diversity

  • Contact: Sal Monteagudo
    109 E. 3rd St.
    Morris, MN 56267

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