At the Workplace, What Exactly is Meant by the Term “Racial Prejudice”?

“Race discrimination” is defined as “trying to treat someone (an interviewee or employee) adversely because he or she is of a specific ethnic background or due to personal attributes related to race (such as hair type, skin tone, or certain facial characteristics).

Nevertheless, it is not restricted to merely a person’s physical qualities. It is also possible for someone to be treated unfairly due to the person they are related to or married to. It could involve something as straightforward as a remark that is made. Alternatively, it can be a more serious issue. For example, one of the issues that people are mostly questioned about at work is the origin of their name due to a certain ethnical background. Another common topic of inquiry is whether or not they speak the specific language of this background.

Cases of Racial Prejudice and Bigotry

The following are a few instances of racial prejudice that frequently occur in the work environment:

  • Racist remarks or jokes.
  • Making comments about an individual’s race or color that are insulting or disparaging is considered to be.
  • A remark on their appearance or a request to stroke their hair are examples of inappropriate behavior.
  • Inferring that they must be successful at anything due to the fact that they are of a certain race.
  • Making assumptions about someone’s socioeconomic standing based on the color of the person.
  • Having doubts about their citizenship.
  • Insinuating that they are employed as a result of affirmative action.
  • Any unfriendly or hostile behaviors with the intent to create fear due to the racial identity of another person.
  • These are, of course, only a few instances of racial prejudice that you should be alert to.
  • Keep in mind that you should not experience feelings of being cast aside or isolated while working.

The Effects of Racial Prejudice on One’s Efficiency in the Workplace

Your effectiveness as an employee can be severely hindered if you are subjected to racial discrimination while you are on the job. The following are some of the consequences that it has:


A hostile or harmful working environment might be the result of any form of prejudice that occurs in the workplace. According to an article published in Vox, it is not unusual for people to resort to fear tactics in order to get someone to leave their place of employment. This is not something that is confined to the conventional settings of employment. For example, while NASCAR driver Bubba Wallace was competing, spectators jeered at him and waved confederate flags in front of him. The audience actually cheered as his automobile crashed into the crowd. As you’ll see, it can affect people of any age and gender.


In most cases, satisfied staff result from a happy working environment. Your emotional health can suffer if you are subjected to racial discrimination on the job on a regular basis. This depression may not only affect your performance at work, but it can also spread to other parts of your life. You have earned the right to work in an environment that does not bring you down.


The natural “fight or flight” response in your body will become more pronounced if you are in a situation in which you feel threatened. If you frequently find yourself on edge while you’re in the workplace, it could be a sign of a more serious problem, such as anxiousness. Anxiety has a negative impact on all aspects of your life, including the health of your finances. Your monetary compensation may suffer as a direct result of bad emotions such as depression, fear, and anxiety. Due to the fact that there is already a salary difference, we are unable to afford this.

How Employees Might Effectively Protest Racial Injustice in the Workplace

You, as an employee, have the ability to combat prejudice in the workplace by taking a variety of important activities. Not only for the sake of oneself but also the sake of others.

Don’t Avoid Dealing With the Problem

It is simply not acceptable to remain silent in the face of prejudice in the workplace. This is not the place to ignore the problem. An instance of racial discrimination, for example, has the potential to quickly devolve into a “he said/she said” dispute on the part of Human Resources. Regardless of whether the insult or insinuation was not directed at you, you still have the potential to be a useful eyewitness and ally in the future.

It is essential to keep in mind that there is always the possibility that you will be a victim at some point in the future. If anything like this does happen to you, you shouldn’t try to hide it or pretend it didn’t happen in the hopes of preventing possible disputes or friction. You can be caught aback, hurt, or even ashamed of what has happened. Please keep in mind that despite how you may feel, there is nothing illegal about what you did. You did not make a request for something of this nature to take place, either. It is critical to confront this intimidation not only for your own sake but also for the sake of those who are also being victimized. You show other people how to approach you, and as a consequence, you have the ability to stop it.

Take a Stance on the Act

It is in everyone’s best interest to confront instances of racial discrimination head-on and in a reasonable timeframe if possible. You are more than welcome to answer with something along the lines of “Hey, did you really say that?” If they act as though they are unaware, restate what they said in the manner that is least likely to offend you at this time. Reiterating the racist statement that was said is a good idea in this particular circumstance. Explain that this is racist behavior and that you will not put up with it in any form, regardless of whether or not they acknowledge being racist.

Bring Your Issues to the Attention of Human Resources

It is imperative that you report any instances of racial discrimination at work to HR as well as your direct supervisor as soon as possible. You have the option of calling them right away or setting up a meeting to discuss the matter. In any case, we strongly advise sending a letter to document the events that transpired after they had taken place. In this method, you will be able to preserve one for your records while also having the other one included in the relevant file.

Contrastingly, making a broad observation, addressing individual instances of harassment, in whatever shape it may take, makes it much simpler for human resources and management. Be sure to pay attention and include as many specifics as you can, particularly in written forms of communication. It is common to blank out or forget the behavior of others, particularly after a stressful circumstance; this is why it is so crucial to record it as soon as you may possibly find the chance to do so. The pudding, as the adage goes, is where the proof is! Therefore, make sure that you add as many specifics about the event as rapidly as you possibly can.

Request That Those in Management Establish a Secure Environment for Having Uncomfortable Discussions

  • You can also use your perspective to push for change by urging management to create secure spaces for people to engage in these tough conversations, which is another approach to using your voice.
  • You can make suggestions such as establishing a dedicated person in HR or an email address that can be addressed in confidence to voice concerns. Both of these options are good options.
  • You may also advise holding a series of continuous corporate meetings, which could include both private and public gatherings. Panels and forums are also an option.
  • Sadly, racism is just not going away in the foreseeable future. However, we can contribute to the acceleration of the process by insisting that these discussions take place and become an inherent element of any future continuous business culture.
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