Racism and racial discrimination

Racism is the act of treating someone unfairly because of their race, colour, nationality or ethnic or national origins. In its most overt form, racial discrimination can occur as a result of stereotyping and prejudice, and implicit bias.

The Equality Act 2010 makes it illegal to discriminate against someone because of their race in various settings e.g. in the workplace, accessing public services, in contact with public bodies, etc.

Racism is pervasive and can manifest in several often-overlapping forms (including personal, cultural, structural and institutional racism). Like other types of discrimination, it can lead to a profound feeling of pain, harm and humiliation among members of the target group, often leading to despair and exclusion.

In the UK, there are persistent and wide-ranging inequalities for people from Black, Asian and minority ethnic backgrounds, increasing their likelihood of being disadvantaged across all aspects of society compared to those from other backgrounds.

While a vast majority of racial issues may not necessarily be overt, the prolonged impact of covert, subtle and nuanced racism can have a detrimental impact on social, physical, mental and emotional wellbeing, leading to frustration, anger and resentment for many people.



Further reading