According to black and minority ethnic workers at the Bristol City Council, a culture of institutional racism is harbouring over their office for several years.
There have been complaints about bullying and discrimination with most of them not properly dealt with, as revealed by an investigation.
The council responded strongly to these allegations. Interviews from the press have already led one of their senior officials to resign, causing them to admit their lack of awareness regarding equality and diversity in the work area. However, the council said that they are working on improving their work ethics with regard to minority groups. They are positive that they will be able to change the system soon and become a healthy, non-discriminating, and safe area for everyone.
It has also been revealed that some witnesses were scolded for trying to speak out. However, the issue has been revealed by some staff members and witnesses who came to the press seeking for help.
A number of cases has been revealed as council employees presented as witnesses to such practices in the council. There was even a couple of evidence against the punishment they were subjected to because of speaking up.
Some of them also received the same racist and discriminative treatment from their co-workers when they tried to present their cases to the authorities in the office. Hence, they decided to seek help from people outside their office in putting an end to institutional racism in their office.
The council’s staff has re-launched a BAME (black and minority ethnic) group last August in high hopes of raising more awareness about equality and inclusion in the office.
Saida Bello, Chair of the council’s BAME group, encourages staff members to raise their complaints and concerns with them if they have any.
In addition to this, they are planning on reviewing the council’s HR policies to provide a cultural change in the City Council.