BME discrimination “still haunts the British workplace,” study finds

New research suggests that discrimination against black and minority ethnic (BME) workers is frighteningly common in UK workplaces.

According to the survey, which was carried out by the Trades Union Congress (TUC), more than a third of BME workers believe that they have been either bullied, abused or singled-out at work – with more than half claiming that the discrimination they have suffered has been due to their race.

A further two in five of the 1,000 BME workers quizzed added that managers and senior members of staff at their places of work were the main perpetrators, while one in five said that such bosses had unfairly denied them training or promotion opportunities.

Frances O’Grady, General Secretary at the TUC, said that the survey’s results were “unacceptable” and that employers needed to start taking a “zero-tolerance” approach towards racial discrimination in the workplace.

She said: “Racism still haunts the British workplace. Racist bullying, harassment and victimisation should have no place anywhere, least of all at work. And it’s clear that people are being denied opportunities because of their race.

“Employers must take a zero-tolerance attitude and treat every complaint seriously.

“It’s a scandal that so few black and Asian workers feel their bosses are not dealing with racism properly,” she said.

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Donna Martin

Donna Martin

Partner at Mackrell Turner Garrett
Donna Martin is a Partner in the Employment team at Mackrell Turner Garrett’s London office. She advises both employers and employees on a full range of contentious and non-contentious issues. As an employment law expert, Donna has significant experience in drafting employment contracts and handbooks, advising on grievance and disciplinary procedures and preparatory work prior to tribunals, including advising on the advantages and disadvantages of settling cases.
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