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Seb Anthony

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It was hard to believe what I heard on BBC Radio 4 this morning. Here’s a couple of quotes from the report:

“‘Of 30 temping agencies contacted by an Inside Out West researcher, 25 agreed to a request for a receptionist job to be offered only to white workers.’

The researcher also posed as an employer who wanted a temporary receptionist, but insisted the person had to be white.
Among those who agreed to the request was one agency worker who said: ‘That's fine. You are not allowed to say it but, no, we certainly hear what you say. That's not a problem.’

Tom Hadley, of the Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC), said: ‘We would expect agencies within the REC membership to challenge that kind of discriminatory instruction and to walk away from the business if they had to - because that is how seriously we take this particular issue.’
‘It shows there's still a lot of work we need to do. We will not tolerate this kind of discriminatory behaviour.’"

Has anybody in the training fraternity ever been subjected to a request or pressure to comply with some racially motivated discrimination? What did you do?

Garry Platt

4 Responses

  1. Living in the real world
    >>>Has anybody in the training fraternity ever been subjected to a request or pressure to comply with some racially motivated discrimination? What did you do?>>>>

    No, but I do get fed up with training exercises/synicate exercise that only refer to ‘white British names’.

    Also fed up with the number of agencies that ask me for age and ethnic minority – why do they need this if its non-public sector work?

  2. beg your pardon….
    Er…….why is it only public sector employers who have a right to ask age and ethnic minority?

  3. Clarity

    Neither age nor ethnicity can be used when recruiting. I understand public sector have a duty to monitor diversity but am not aware (perhaps I’m wrong) that this extends to the private sector. So why are recruitment co’s asking these questions for private sector work when it shouldn’t form part of the recruitment process?
    Interestingly REC put it all down to a lack of training
    personally I think its down to agency management turning a blind eye.

  4. Discrimination

    Two points really

    1 – I think any employer, public or private, can ask for this information as part of their monitoring process, i.e. to see how successful (or not) they are in recruiting / interviewing / appointing canditates from a wide range of backgrounds. (I don’t think you as a candidate have to supply it.) However the information should be seperated immediately from the application form and should never be used as part of the selection process.

    2) I did once go to an agency for a comupter programming job ( a long time ago). I looked through their vacancies and found one that matched my experience really well, paid OK and as close to home. But the woman at the agency told me that they only employed men. I said they can’t do that can they? And she said that the employer only gave verbal instructions over the phone so they had no records and that they would interview women if the agency sent them so as to keep out of trouble, but as they only ever appointed men it was a wasted time sending women for interviews.

    I suspect there is a lot of discrimination still going on at this unspoken level – with employers interviewing candidates they have no intention of employing just so that they can’t be proved to be breaking the law.


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