Ethnic Minorities still plagued with inequality within the workplace

An investigation by Business in the Community’s Race for Opportunity (RFO) campaign has concluded that race inequality is increasing within the workplace. This is despite a general consensus that race is no longer a serious issue in Great Britain.

Tracking Office for National Statistics data their investigation has sadly concluded that being a member of an ethnic minority group still acts as a barrier to progression. Calling the findings “Devastating”, RFO are now calling for major policy intervention to address the issue along similar lines to how gender inequality was tackled.  Furthermore RFO argue until the government acknowledges the existence of race as an issue, as it did with gender it will not achieve race equality.

The findings call for urgent and decisive action. RFO feel the situation may worsen, particularly with the economy in such an unhealthy state, they warn the potential to regress further is very real. The report makes the following recommendations:-

  • Promote positive action to speed up progress of ethnic minorities in a way that both gives clarity to employers and does not stoke up accusations of unfair treatment
    against the white population;
  • Invest in targeted projects to promote the progression of BAME people into leadership positions;
  • Ensure that the achievements - working class whites and ethnic minorities - are recognised across the curriculum; and
  • Ensure that talented BAME people progress in the public sector; and in all walks of public life. Only by leading by example can government show the private sector what can be achieved. Employers can contribute by looking at their own individual employment and promotion policies. A sustained, long term commitment to the agenda and recognition that it will take lots of small steps by lots of people are required.

Only a few weeks ago Diversity Link reported that the most detailed analysis ever carried out on ethnic minority employment prospects had concluded that Ethnic Minorities' job prospects were no better than they had been in the1970s.

Evidence continues to paint a dark picture for ethnic minorities in Great Britain. Some observers within the Equality and Diversity sector may even be surprised that race inequality is crawling back up the agenda having spent years battling the issue.

But without effective policy many may conclude their swords were indeed blunt, and we may have to face up to the reality that society has been paying lip service to the issue over the last two decades. The evidence continues to point to this and without policy and intervention its difficult to see how things may change.


posted by

Asif Yusuf



Comments for article #253

Go Back to Previous Page