Third of racist incidents occur in workplace or classroom

Immigrant Council say employers and educational institutions must be more robust in combating racism

Denise Charlton, chief executive of the Immigrant Council of Ireland: “People have a right to about their work and studies without the threat of racism.” Photographer: Dara Mac Dónaill

Denise Charlton, chief executive of the Immigrant Council of Ireland: “People have a right to about their work and studies without the threat of racism.” Photographer: Dara Mac Dónaill

Fri, Apr 18, 2014, 01:00


Almost one- third of racist incidents reported to the Immigrant Council of Ireland in the first three months of this year related to the workplace and the classroom.

Of the 67 cases reported to stopracism@immigrantcouncil.ie between January and March, 15 per cent related to racist incidents which occurred in workplaces while a further 15 per cent related to classrooms.

Denise Charlton, chief executive of the Immigrant Council of Ireland, said the trend for racist incidents to occur in these environments indicated that employers and educational institutions needed to be more robust in combating racism.

“People have a right to go about their work and studies without the threat of racism, and we would ask employers as well as boards of management in schools and colleges to make sure procedures are in place to ensure that their premises are free from racism,” she said.

A fifth of the reports related to racism experienced by individuals in their homes or in local communities. A further 13.4 per cent occurred on the street, while 12 per cent related to incidents which occurred when the person involved was accessing government or community services.


Verbal harassment
Individual incidents can involve multiple forms of racism, with verbal harassment the most common, experienced in almost half of the 67 recorded cases.

Discrimination and social exclusion were a feature of 37 per cent of cases, while physical violence was recorded in almost a fifth of the cases.

A quarter of the reports related to children under the age of 18.

Men were slightly more likely to have experienced racism than women, with 55 per cent of the cases involving men.

The Immigrant Council of Ireland is calling for the establishment of a centralised data base and the use of the Garda Pulse system to ensure accurate recording of racist incidents.