Almost seven out of 10 (68 per cent) people with ethnic minority backgrounds experienced discrimination at work within the UK’s financial services industry in the last year, new research showed, despite the country becoming increasingly more diverse.
The survey conducted by the racial harmony campaigner Reboot and Coleman Parkes said 82 per cent of respondents of ethnic minority groups said they experienced unwelcome comments based on their background.
A quarter of the respondents think racist jokes are still tolerated at their workplace, the survey reported by the IFA Magazine said.
Less than half (47 per cent) of ethnic minority respondents who faced discrimination said they raised issues with their HR teams but three-quarters of them felt HR was not very effective at dealing with the issues.
Some 52 per cent of those who experienced discrimination said they came under greater scrutiny by their managers and 48 per cent said colleagues treated them differently for speaking up.
While 49 per cent of the respondents experiencing discrimination over the last year said they had to take time off work and 56 per cent had to seek counselling to help recover from negativity at their workplaces.
Dimple Mistry, the co-lead of Race & Ethnicity at Diversity Project said: “Given my professional background, there is a call to action for all HR professionals to come together, educate themselves and create safe channels for staff to approach them, and for matters to be taken seriously when raised.”
She said, “I recognise that this is a journey that does not stop. This requires us all, no matter what your background, to come together to consciously work towards creating a truly inclusive industry and workplace cultures that enable professionals from an ethnically diverse background to feel a strong sense of belonging and thrive wherever they are.”