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01 June 2022

Comment: racism in the workplace

2 mins

Following a recent survey into racism in the workplace, Tatiana Dall, trainee solicitor in our Employment team, comments:

Code-switching is when a person, often as an underrepresented member of a group, adapts their language, behaviour, appearance and interests to match that of the prevailing culture.

A recent survey by the Runnymede Trust and the Fawcett Society has found that 75% of women of colour have experienced racism at work, and 61% of women of colour reported changing themselves to ‘fit in’. This includes 37% changing the words they use, 26% changing their hairstyle, and 22% changing their name.

As an employer it is essential to enforce a zero tolerance policy for racism. The Runnymede Trust and the Fawcett Society are calling in particular for employers to implement Anti-Racism Action Plans, implement clear procedures for reporting racism, provide intersectional anti-racism training and ‘stay interviews’ as opposed to ‘exit interviews’ to gain an insight into employees’ personal experiences. It is hoped that with clear guidelines for reporting, and greater education/training on anti-racism, the workplace will become a safe place for people of all backgrounds to excel in their career, unfettered by racism.

Our Employment team offer expert advice in relation to racism in the workplace. Get in touch with us by submitting an enquiry form here

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