By Lilly Workneh, huffingtonpost.com
Black women on Twitter are fed up with the way they are treated in the workplace so they are sharing their experiences on Twitter.
Activist Brittany Packnett kicked off the hashtag #BlackWomenAtWork on Tuesday afternoon in response to the disrespectful ways in which two prominent black women were treated by public figures throughout the day.
On Tuesday’s morning episode of “Fox & Friends,” the network’s Bill O’Reilly mocked Rep. Maxine Waters (D-Ca.) by saying he was too distracted by her “James Brown” wig to listen to anything she had to say about President Donald Trump. He has since issued an apology, claiming it was all “a jest.” Later in the day, White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer scolded White House correspondent April D. Ryan and told her to stop shaking her head. This happened before a room full of journalists, and it was televised and broadcast on national TV.
Packnett said that both incidents were unacceptable, but also unfortunately familiar.
“I’m surrounded everyday by brilliant, confident, incredible black professional women who get demeaned despite their prowess. Today, I was over it,” Packnett told The Huffington Post. “I have deep an abiding respect for Congresswoman Waters and Ms. Ryan who are both trailblazers in their fields. They are to be respected, just like every other black woman who rises each day to contribute to this society in ways that are all-too-often taken for granted.”
As a way to help address these issues, Packnett encouraged black women online to share some of their real-life experiences at work.
“I wanted the hashtag to make the invisible visible, to challenge non-black people to stand with black women not just when this happens on television, but in the cube right next to them,” she said. “I’m also glad stories of triumph and achievement got shared through the hashtag as well ― black women are more than just our woes, we are triumphant.”