Most ethnic minority finance workers face discrimination, UK report says | Financial sector


Two in three British financial workers from black and minority ethnic backgrounds have faced discrimination in the workplace, according to an industry survey revealing gaps in the City of London’s diversity program.

The results of the restart. – a network of seasoned professionals from some of the city’s biggest companies, including fund managers Legal & General and State Street – said the industry was not backing diversity commitments with concrete actions.

According to the group’s Race to Equality report, which surveyed 800 employees from 440 companies with more than £ 1.4 billion in annual revenue, 66% of BAME employees have experienced discrimination at work because of their background.

More than a quarter (28%) said discrimination held back their careers, while almost half (48%) felt their career progression was slower than for white colleagues.

Four in 10 (41%) thought their employers did not demonstrate a full commitment to creating an inclusive environment, while only half said they felt their leadership teams really believed that diversity was essential to the workplace. future success of the business.

It comes despite a growing number of city leaders taking a public stand on the importance of diversity since the murder of George Floyd last year by a US police officer, which sparked a resurgence of the Black Lives Matter movement in the UK. .

Jörg Ambrosius, European Managing Director of US investment manager State Street, said: “There is more work for all of us, and the problems and challenges that remain will only be resolved if we resolve them collectively. It should grab everyone’s attention.

Despite the progress made in recent years, few businesses in the City track the ethnic diversity of their employees. However, a July report from the Financial Conduct Authority, the city’s watchdog, found that less than one in 10 managerial positions were held by black, Asian or other ethnic minority staff.

While reporting gender pay gaps has been a legal requirement for UK companies with more than 250 employees since 2017, only 13 of the 100 largest UK listed employers are currently reporting their origin-related pay gaps. ethnic.

Justin Onuekwusi, head of retail multi-asset funds at Legal & General Investment Management, said financial industry bosses need to listen more carefully to the individual needs of their employees.

“They have to work to develop how they can support their career progression and ultimately create a more inclusive culture. This is something that is evident across the industry – it is not confined to just one area of ​​the financial services space – so there is no room for anyone to hide, ”a- he declared.

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