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Britons from ethnic minorities believe top professions are closed to them

Published on: Thursday, 17th June 2010 08:48 AM     By      Payal

Racism is still stopping Britain's ethnic minorities from entering the best-paid professions despite them having a stronger work ethic and greater drive than white Britons, a report released tomorrow claims.

The report, funded by the government and compiled by charity, whose president is Prince Charles, says too many ethnic minority Britons feel prestige jobs in the law, banking, media and politics are closed to them.

It finds "blatant racism", including taunts about being terrorists, is still closing doors and warns that the government and business must take tougher action.

For the study, 1,500 people from all ethnic backgrounds were interviewed. Asked which professions were seen as racist, nearly half of all respondents saw the police as prejudiced, rising to 72% for Afro-Caribbeans. The armed forces were seen as prejudiced by 36%, politics by 30%, and law by 16%.

The report said: "Overall it is clear that some of the best-paid professions in the UK are still seen as subtly hostile or openly racist towards ethnic minorities ... It is disappointing that over so many decades of official initiatives ... that a significant minority should see institutional racism across the board."

The report is expected to be studied by the Department of Communities and Local Government, which paid for it, and by the ethnic minority employment task force, which was set up by the Cabinet Office under Labour.

Nearly one in three people from ethnic minorities felt it was "hard" to get a media job, with 24% feeling law was hard to break into, 22% for banking, and 20% for politics. Once in a profession, the report finds concerns among Afro-Caribbean and Asian Britons about gaining promotion.

More than a quarter of people from ethnic minorities ruled out joining the top professions, with more than four out of 10 ruling out entering the police or politics. But the study also finds that they have higher aspirations to succeed than white Britons.

Ethnic minorities make up 10.3% of the population, but 8.5% of the workforce and just 6.3% of those in management jobs.
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