‘Racist’ recruitment email sent by practice nurse triggers investigation following myriad of complaints

The regulator has been quick to act, condemning the email and releasing a statement promising to investigate.

James McKay
18 May 2021
Computer Monitor screen, concept of email

A person’s ethnicity should have no bearing on recruitment practices.

The Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) alongside a Clinical Commissioning Group have confirmed they will investigate a “racist” recruitment email that commented on an applicant’s ethnic background.

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On social media over the weekend, the daughter of a registered nurse shared what she described as an “unprofessional, prejudice and incredibly discriminatory” reply her mother had received to a job application at Coventry and Warwickshire Clinical Commissioning Group.

The response, which appears to have been inadvertently sent back to the nurse applying for the role by the recruiting practice nurse simply read; “Another one but again Nigerian”.

Many on social media were quick to dub the email “racist”, pointing out that a person’s ethnicity should have no bearing on recruitment practices.

No place for discrimination.

The regulator has been quick to act, condemning the email and releasing a statement promising to investigate.

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In a statement released today by the regulator, Chief Executive and Registrar at the NMC Andrea Sutcliffe, said: “We are aware of the unacceptable comment made by email and shared over the weekend, which is another example of the long road ahead to stamping out discrimination.

“We will work with the employer and the individuals involved to ensure the right support is provided and the appropriate action is taken.”

Adding; “We value the diversity of the nurses, midwives and nursing associates on our register, and it is unacceptable for anyone to be treated differently based on any aspect of who they are.

“There should also be no place for discrimination in health and social care and we all have a responsibility to tackle it.

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Treating nurses differently because of their race.

The Nurses of Colour Network has called for an investigation into “any pattern of discrimination”.

Rachel Ambrose, a mental health nurse and Co-Chair of the Nurses of Colour network responded to the email; “As a Nurse of Colour, I can tell you now that these unfounded judgments are made about us every day.

“Decisions made about our suitability for positions because of our race or country of origin rather than our skill or experience. This is why our network created our Anti-racist framework to demand that senior management are held accountable for any bias in the decision-making throughout the recruitment process.

“We also demand that any pattern of discrimination is explored and acted upon. It is wrong, when we have thousands of vacancies, for our patients to be put at risk by treating nurses differently because of their race.”

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