An independent investigation into working conditions at a unit of the NHS’s blood and organ transplant service has concluded that it is “systemically racist” and “psychologically unsafe.”
The internal investigation was commissioned in response to numerous complaints from ethnic minority staff working in a unit of NHS Blood and Transplant (NHSBT) in Colindale, north London. The report, carried out by the workplace relations company Globis Mediation Group, concluded that the environment was “toxic” and “dysfunctional.”
The report found evidence that ethnic minority employees had faced discrimination when applying for jobs and that white candidates had been selected for posts ahead of black applicants who were better qualified. “Recruitment is haphazard, based on race and class and whether a person’s ‘face fits,’” it said.
“Being ignored, being viewed as ineligible for promotion and enduring low levels of empathy all seem to be normal,” the report noted. “These behaviours have created an environment which is now psychologically unsafe and systemically racist.”
Chaand Nagpaul, BMA council chair, commented, “This report highlights all too painfully the racial prejudices and discrimination we are seeing across healthcare. We must renew efforts to challenge these behaviours and bring an end to the enduring injustices faced by black people and BAME healthcare workers here in the UK.”
Source: BMJ, 10 June 2020