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RACISM: BLACK & MINORITY ETHNIC (BME) WORKERS ARE BULLIED, MISTREATED AND EXPLOITED IN BRITAIN, cut out of steady work and a fair deal- TUC analysis finds an ethnicity pay gap
BLACK and minority ethnic (BME) workers are far more likely to be trapped in temporary and insecure work, according to new TUC analysis published today at the start of its annual Black Workers Conference.
The union warned Britain’s labour market “is discriminating against BME workers” and called on the government to pass a gender pay gap-style law to stamp out “widespread institutional racism” in the jobs market.
TUC general secretary Frances O’Grady said: “Far too many BME workers are stuck in low-paid, insecure and temporary work.
“This has a huge impact on their living standards and life chances.
“This problem isn’t simply going to disappear over time.
“We need a co-ordinated approach led by government to confront inequality and racism in the labour market — and wider society.”
The union’s analysis shows how BME workers are faring worse than white workers in the jobs market.
Britain’s 3.9 million BME working people are more than twice as likely to be stuck on agency contracts than white workers, according to the TUC.
All of its figures are taken from the Office for National Statistics Labour Force Survey from the end of 2018.
The analysis also found that non-white workers are also much more likely to be on zero-hours contracts and in part-time jobs.
In some cases the lack of hours is so extreme that BME working people cannot make ends meet.
To tackle this problem the TUC is calling on the government to legislate to introduce mandatory ethnicity pay gap reporting for all employers with more than 50 employees, including a duty to produce an action plan.
The union is also calling on employers to collect and publish data on BME pay, recruitment, promotion and dismissal.
BME workers were found to have been losing out on £3.2 billion a year in wages compared to their white colleagues doing the same work, think tank Resolution Foundation revealed in December.
After taking account of differences in average qualifications and job types, the analysis found the gap rose to as much as 17 per cent, or £3.90 an hour, for black male graduates’ pay.
Stand up to Racism co-convener Weyman Bennett told the Star: “This exposes what’s called the ‘ethnicity penalty’ where black workers are expected to get paid less for their labour than white counterparts.
“The main beneficiaries are bosses and government.
“In the words of Frederick Douglass: ‘They divided both to conquer each’. If we break this racist penalty all of us will benefit.”
The Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy said: “Discrimination has no place in our jobs market, and diversity is good for both businesses and the communities they serve. We already have near record high ethnic minority employment in the UK—but we want even more companies’ workforces to reflect modern Britain.
“In October the Prime Minister launched a series of measures to help employers identify how to tackle ethnic disparities in the workplace, including a new Race at Work Charter and a consultation on mandatory ethnicity pay reporting.” morning star -photo-PM Theresa May