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Black and Asian UK workers say they are held back at work by bias, survey finds

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Large majorities of black and Asian workers believe they have been overlooked for employment opportunities, including promotion, because of their identity, according to research, with some citing their hairstyles and not drinking alcohol as key factors.Seventy-one per cent of employees from a black background reported feeling overlooked for opportunities owing to their identity; 66% from Asian backgrounds and 65% of those who identified as LGBTQ+ also had the same experience.The “worrying” findings, from a study by the Chartered Management Institute, suggest UK employers may be paying lip service to public promises to promote equality and diversity, rendering workplace inclusivity an “illusion” two years after the Black Lives Matter protests.

Workers who identify as LGBTQ+ also experienced greater harassment and bullying.A third of employees polled – equivalent to 6.9 million people – said they had been treated less favourably, received hostile, derogatory or negative attitudes and comments, or had been harassed or bullied owing to their identity.The CMI warned that the figures reveal “complacency within UK organisations that is a barrier to future economic performance and organisational success”.

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