How do you deal with racism?

3 Replies to “Racism”

  1. Hi there. Can you be a bit more specific? I’m not sure what your context is, or what exactly it is that you’re looking to answer. Do you mean how to respond when you’re the victim of racism? Or do you mean responding to racism on a larger scale, like at the level of society? Or, do you mean racism within a certain context e.g. healthcare, education, etc.



  2. Hi there. When I have a patient, who refuse the physical treatment because of my origin. How should I deal with this? I’m a physiothreapist not only a african woman. I love my job and I do ma job verry well.



    1. Hi Edi. Sadly, we have similar situations in South Africa – not all the time – but often enough that it’s not unusual for my students to speak to me about this. Luckily, our Constitution makes it clear that discrimination in any form is unacceptable, so even though the patient has certain rights, it’s very clear that with those rights come responsibilities. And one of the responsibilities is to ensure that you respect the rights of others. I tell my students very clearly that they have no obligation to treat patients who are rude or disrespectful to them. Our healthcare providers have the right – afforded by the Constitution – to work in an environment that is safe and devoid of discrimination.

      In similar situations at home, the patient may make a request that they do not want to be treated by an African student. In those circumstances, the physiotherapy department has sometimes refused to treat the patient, since their request is fundamentally illegal. In most situations the patient will apologise to the student. I’m not sure how you will be able to handle the situation there, but in my opinion, it is never OK for a patient to discriminate against the therapist, nor to be rude or disrespectful to them. However, you should check to see what the law requires in your country.


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