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Racism in the NHS

Updated: Nov 6, 2020

Little do people know that explicit racism has mutated to micro-aggressions and unconscious bias. Micro-aggressions refer to the everyday behavioral, verbal, and environmental humiliations that are unintentional or intentional, that communicates insults, hostility, and negative racial remarks towards an individual or a minority group.

Unconscious bias is the inner behavior or judgment resulting from unconscious thought processes, and they operate in absentia of intentional control. Unconscious bias is founded on stereotypes against minority groups such as Black people.

Identifying Micro-aggressions and Unconscious Bias

The scary part is that both the perpetrators and victims of microaggressions and unconscious often bias fail to recognize them. Microaggressions and unconscious bias are mostly unintentional and unconscious.

Many Black nurses have come to accept these behaviors and forms of discrimination within the working environment because the behaviour is concealed behind everyday speech and activities. It simply becomes normal and part of the culture.

Micro-aggressions have been likened to carbon monoxide because, just as the gas, they seem to be invisible, but they are fatal.

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