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Sunday 22 September 2019

No céad míle fáilte in the workplace if you are black and not Irish

(Stock image)
(Stock image)

Anne-Marie Walsh

If you happen to be black and not Irish, there is no céad míle fáilte waiting for you in the Irish workplace.

Black non-nationals are five times more likely to face discrimination when looking for a job here than white Irish people, it has been revealed.

Even when they get one, they are almost three times as likely to get a harder time of it than their colleagues or to land a top job as a manager.

To top it all, they are much less likely to have a job in the first place, a study by the Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI) found.

Black people who are Irish are more likely to have a job and avoid discrimination when looking for work than those who are not.

When it comes to being employed, there is little difference between them and the white Irish population.

However, this does not apply when it comes to discrimination at work or the roles they end up with.

Both the black non-Irish and black Irish groups are much less likely to hold a managerial or professional job.

In stark contrast, there is practically no difference between white Irish or UK natives when it comes to having a job, the type of jobs they get or whether they are discriminated against while looking for a job or when they are in the workplace.

The Ethnicity and Nationality in the Irish Labour Market report, to be published today, lays bare the pecking order that appears to be operating against certain ethnic groups.

It is the first major study of the experiences of employees in the more diverse workplace that followed an increase in immigration during the late 1990s and early 2000s.

The report's definition of discrimination is pretty broad.

It is any situation where a worker is treated less favourably because they belong to a specific group.

Another finding was that white people from western Europe are more likely to have a job than the white Irish.

However, there is no difference between them when it comes to the type of jobs they get or the likelihood that they will face discrimination.

It is not just black people who have a difficult time.

White eastern Europeans are more likely than the white Irish to experience discrimination and less likely to get the best roles.

Non-Irish Asians do not differ from the white Irish in terms of their employment rates or discrimination when looking for work but are less likely to be in the top jobs.

Asian Irish people seem to have an advantage as they are more likely to work in professional jobs than the white Irish.

The authors of the report say that qualifications gained abroad must be recognised and English language and training programmes set up for immigrants.

Irish Independent

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