Diversity management practices in the Ministry of transport and infrastructure, Kenya
Ojango, Loice Okwoma Abukutsa
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Diversity is a commitment to recognizing and appreciating the variety of characteristics that make individuals unique in an atmosphere that promotes and celebrates diversity. Diversity management practices involve the activities undertaken to encourage employees to value diversity. The objective of the study was to establish diversity management Practices in the Ministry of Transport and Infrastructure. The study adopted a case study design. Primary data was collected from 12 respondents out of 13 respondents using an interview guide and this gave a response rate of 92%. The population consisted of 42 officers who are members of the Departmental and Ministerial committees on diversity management. Data was analyzed using content analysis. It was established that the Ministry has policies and strategies on gender and disability mainstreaming with sexual harassment clearly articulated in the gender based violence policy. There was no policy on sexual orientation, ethnicity and age consideration and the Ministry relied on the Constitution of Kenya 2010, Government circulars and Human Resource Manual. The study established that gender mainstreaming, disability mainstreaming, ethnicity, age and sexual orientation were ranked in order of importance. It can be concluded that the Ministry needs to have in place policies on ethnicity, sexual orientation and age consideration. The recommendations were that the Ministry should make diversity management, a strategic matter and each employee made to account for their involvement in diversity improvement programs as part of continuous performance assessment. Stake holder involvement was found to be important. Sexual orientation should be addressed and studies undertaken to establish how many officers are of non conformist sexual orientation. The Ministry needs to drive all components of diversity at the same level and not to leave behind the three that have been mentioned without policies. The Ministry is encouraged to have a general value strategy to manage diversity. The study also recommends that gender mainstreaming, disability mainstreaming, ethnicity management, age consideration and sexual orientation need separate policies. Further studies should be undertaken in other organizations in Kenya.