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To report colleague for racism?

(194 Posts)
Madamecastafiore Thu 23-May-13 03:45:16

I just think she is incredibly thick but am finding it harder and harder to deal with her little gems lately.

Yesterday TB and whooping cough are apparently at epidemic proportions because of foreigners coming into this country.


She quite happily says, although lowers her voice a little (WTF) that her husband refuses to eat garlic as he couldn't stand the thought of smelling like a Paki!!!

I am in an office with her and one other woman who occasionally has a rant about foreigners taking jobs but am just about at the end of my rope with it. Ate these people just thick or I don't know, how can they think this is right?

I nearly said I felt sorry for her being married to a racist wanker but in all other respects she is actually a nice lady.

I can't ignore this can I?

MyBaby1day Thu 23-May-13 03:57:36

Yes report this person. I am half Pakistani and would find her comments incredibly offensive. Maybe tell her first that's it's not acceptable and then if she hasn't changed her ways report it. It's completely wrong.

raisah Thu 23-May-13 04:15:53

Tell her that you eat garlic so does that you smell like one too? Silly thick cow.

BonaDea Thu 23-May-13 05:15:13

I'd report her. Letting this stuff slide is what enables these people to continue. Whether this is deliberate or just ignorance it is racism. She needs some training at the very least!

My step father is exactly the same (standard of teaching dropping in their home city due to influx of foreigners sending their kids, gay people are 'sexual deviants') and it infuriates me that my mother and his own kids for example never pull him up on it. I have and am always painted as the unreasonable and rude lefty. Fine, better that than tolerating bigotry which IMHO would make me as bad!!

Madamecastafiore Thu 23-May-13 05:18:01

We have an equality and diversity monitor, think maybe will have a chat with him.

I always think that if you can't say it loudly infront of a room full of different races religions and sexualities you shouldn't day it out loud at all.

Doubt she would have uttered the word paki infront of the 3 doctors who have the office next to ours, one is Egyptian, one Malay and one of Indian origin. Maybe I'll point that out to her.

claig Thu 23-May-13 06:30:06

I think it is cowardly to report people behind their backs for saying stupid or offensive things. If you feel strongly about what your colleague says then you should have the courage to confront her directly rather than snitching on her.

I believe in karma, and if you try to get her into trouble, then I think it will create bad karma for you.

The comment about TB and immigration is not so different from many newspaper reports in national papers e.g. here is a report from the Scottish Express

claig Thu 23-May-13 06:44:37

I believe in the type of karma that the Bible teaches

"Don't judge others, lest you be judged yourself"

What are you going to do next? Report her husband to his employer for his stupid comment too?

Dawndonna Thu 23-May-13 06:49:16

I'm Spanish. I eat loads of garlic. Tell the silly cow she smells like me!
Oh, and yes, report her. Racism is racism, it's usually thick people, doesn't make it any better.

KatyTheCleaningLady Thu 23-May-13 06:51:38

I think the use of Paki is unacceptable. It would be preferable to confront her directly, but it would be ok to complain to your employer.

The tb and whooping cough comment I would let slide.

gobbin Thu 23-May-13 06:53:16

I've had a couple of times in my life where I've had to say to someone I know well "You can't say that!" in a wide-eyed omg did you really just say that but friendly kind of way. It worked both times, in that neither of them have come out with anything overtly racist (in my presence anyway!)

notfluffy Thu 23-May-13 07:00:45

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

StealthOfficialCrispTester Thu 23-May-13 07:04:17

but gobbin that implies you're on their side to some extent. "You can't say that" to me implies "we'd like to but not allowed". Obviously I know that's not how you intend it.

StuntGirl Thu 23-May-13 07:10:34

Well claig just because you believe in some hippy claptrap doesn't mean everyone does.

I recently reported someone at work for doing something...I didn't confont them first, I just took it to my line manager who dealt with it. The problem has been resolved to everyone's satisfaction, I don't think any mystical forces will come back to bite me.

claig Thu 23-May-13 07:14:44

I hope they won't.

Altinkum Thu 23-May-13 07:18:11

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

StuntGirl Thu 23-May-13 07:20:35

They won't smile

Altinkum Thu 23-May-13 07:20:58

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

iloveweetos Thu 23-May-13 07:21:26

Just complain. You don't need to confront her at all.

WidowWadman Thu 23-May-13 07:25:33

claig - from experience I know that confronting racists at work does cause at least as much trouble - if not more - as reporting them, so they can be spoken to formally and warned to keep their racist shite to themselves or be sent for diversity training.

If you confront them yourself instead of letting a superior/HR deal with it, it will be likely more disruptive and not stop them anyway.

Madamecastafiore Thu 23-May-13 07:27:23

I don't want to confront her as I think will create difficult atmosphere in our office. I don't want to get her into trouble I just want her to understand she can't say things like that and she is wrong to think that and make her understand that it is actually racist. I actually thing it is ignorance rather than malice when she says things like this.

Good idea about the training. I work in the nhs so there are training courses for everything!

LemonPeculiarJones Thu 23-May-13 07:28:12

claig if karma existed, which - honestly - it doesn't, I think it would be far more likely to 'punish' racist fools, don't you?

Flisspaps Thu 23-May-13 07:30:39

Employers have procedures and staff in place to enable you to report things like this, so you don't confront them directly as Claig suggests. It isn't about trying to get her into trouble, or "karma" - it's about using the official channels at work to ensure that things are properly recorded and sorted out.

I think it is far more cowardly to make these sorts of comments in the first place, or to say nothing, than it is to report.

claig Thu 23-May-13 07:31:02

She did not say anything offensive in front of the three doctors who have an office next door and nor would she.

She probably picked up her view on TB from the headlines in some of our national newspapers, so it would be better to blame those newspapers rather than her.

The stupid comment about garlic is a ridiculous statement, but she is reporting what her husband says and does, rather than what she believes.

claig Thu 23-May-13 07:33:54

'claig if karma existed, which - honestly - it doesn't, I think it would be far more likely to 'punish' racist fools, don't you?'

No. because she is a fool as you say, and in karma terms it is worse to try to get a fool into trouble for something that a fool does. It is all about intent. Folly and intent are different.

The full quote from Luke is as follows, and I believe it has some wisdom in it

“Judge not, and you will not be judged; condemn not, and you will not be condemned; forgive, and you will be forgiven;

claig Thu 23-May-13 07:37:41

"I don't want to get her into trouble I just want her to understand she can't say things like that and she is wrong to think that and make her understand that it is actually racist."

I think gobbin dealt with a similar situation in a good way.

I would do the following - tell her in a friendly but serious way
"Don't say theings like that, they are not nice"

She will then get the message and realise it for herself, but you will not have got her into trouble and you will have effectively made her realise that she was wrong to say it.

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