Are you afraid to approach minority staff members? WHY? - page 8

It's been said that racism and discrimination runs both ways. White nurses complain that minorities gather together and exclude them from conversations. Minorities say that they are passed over for... Read More

  1. by   rebelwaclause
    Originally posted by TheLionessRN
    I do remember a certain unit clerk that I worked with until she quit due to illness...she had been written up a number of times for inaccuracies and serious mistakes in transcription, and for laziness and bad attitude. About 15 years ago, she hired a lawyer and threatened a lawsuit when she was almost fired for some error she made. She accused the hospital of racism, and they didn't fire her out of fear.
    That kind of behavior makes me livid, and I don't understand it at all...from either standpoint.
    Yes, It sickens me too when the "Racism" card is used as a poor defense for trifling work behavior. However, I would be interested to know how many other unit assistants made the same amount of errors, mistakes and so on, but where not written up.

    A foul behavior doesn't make a foul worker, just as a nicey-nice behavior doesn't make a stellar worker. I'm not defending a bad attitude in anyone, just mentioning that in this situation, would she have been written up as much if she was sweet as syrup? Would she have been afforded the "New", "Nice" or "Give her a break because ______" card, if she performed poorly but was nice? Or did she make it easy because of her rotten attitude.....?

    While we are on attitudes...

    Attitude is sometimes interpreted in different ways by different people. Most often "Attitude" is a perception defined by one's own idea's of what is acceptable or not. People at my job are used to me being the upbeat, talkative person. On days that I'm just chilling or not feeling so lively, I'm often asked "Are you OK". or "What's wrong?". I have answered nothing and was latter told I was having an "attitude day".



    I am a hard person to read if I'm not smiling. Usually, I'm just minding my own little business, doing what needs to be done in my day. I'm not rude to staff who approach me, I'm just not as bubbly all the time. This doesn't deem me to have an attitude, just because someone thinks I'm less threatening if I'm smiling all the time. I can't speak for all blacks on this issue, but from experience I feel when we're not smiling, its perceived that we become intimidating....Why? We do not have to smile all the time to be approachable, happy and cool. Just something to think about.
  2. by   tattooednursie
    Race has nothing to do with nursing at all
  3. by   bagladyrn
    Originally posted by FutureRN_Mandi
    Race has nothing to do with nursing at all
    I've got to disagree with you there Mandi - in an ideal world it wouldn't matter, but in reality it can affect the way my patients view me,and their care and any preconceptions my coworkers and I may have will affect our working relationship. So it's much better to drag this out in the open, discuss and acknowlege cultural differences in attitudes and work it out together.
  4. by   LasVegasRN
    Originally posted by bagladyrn
    I've got to disagree with you there Mandi - in an ideal world it wouldn't matter, but in reality it can affect the way my patients view me,and their care and any preconceptions my coworkers and I may have will affect our working relationship. So it's much better to drag this out in the open, discuss and acknowlege cultural differences in attitudes and work it out together.
    Well said, bagladyrn.
  5. by   wjeff
    In reply to the minority issue, unfortunely it is alive and well in MS, I am sorry to say, i.e. this black nurse was informed by her white D.O.N. that she never talked at least quote "you come to work and you don't talk to anyone except to talk about work."So to make along story short she was told in essence she did not fit in @ this faculity.I have had so many of these experiences and know soo many people who has had them, that I find myself truly questioning my profession.It seems that if you want to take care of pts,provide care and not discuss your personal life or other peoples,you are in the wrong business.Another question unrelated, when did it become up to us as nurses to be able to decide if a pt is really in pain and needed pain meds,ordered by the MD.Enough ,for now thanks for allowing me to vent.
  6. by   night owl
    Originally posted by LasVegasRN
    This is the most pleasant thread on race I have ever read.
    You are so right girlfriend!
  7. by   Alley Cat
    Originally posted by rebelwaclause
    . People at my job are used to me being the upbeat, talkative person. On days that I'm just chilling or not feeling so lively, I'm often asked "Are you OK". or "What's wrong?". I have answered nothing and was latter told I was having an "attitude day".



    I am a hard person to read if I'm not smiling. Usually, I'm just minding my own little business, doing what needs to be done in my day. I'm not rude to staff who approach me, I'm just not as bubbly all the time. This doesn't deem me to have an attitude, just because someone thinks I'm less threatening if I'm smiling all the time.
    You know, I get the same thing from people I work with--it's like if one person is the designated upbeat person, you can't ever be any other way (but everybody else can sure have a bad day:stone !) Frankly, some days I just don't DO bubbly!:angryfire
  8. by   w8liftinglady
    Originally posted by bagladyrn
    I've got to disagree with you there Mandi - in an ideal world it wouldn't matter, but in reality it can affect the way my patients view me,and their care and any preconceptions my coworkers and I may have will affect our working relationship. So it's much better to drag this out in the open, discuss and acknowlege cultural differences in attitudes and work it out together.
    I agree 100%.Recently,we had a situation where I work(Texas).A patient was complaining to her family about staff abusing her,hurting her,and the family was understandably livid.Upon investigation,there appeared a trend...all the complaints were against the Black CNAs,Black nurses.I asked the patient if she would just prefer to have white caregivers-and she denied having an issue with it.I approached the staff as a whole,gave them my observations,and allowed them to decide whether they would like to be assigned to this patient or not.Most chose not.Unfortunately,most of my staff who happen to be Black have been subject to some kind of workplace hostility due to their race.I have found that the best approach is a direct,honest approach-with all my staff.The more you push racism into the open,the less power it has over you.Coincidentally,since the above-mentioned patient has had her caregiver mix changed,there have been no further complaints from her.It's not fair to place your staff in a situation that will be hostile to them from the get-go.
  9. by   rebelwaclause
    Originally posted by bagladyrn
    I've got to disagree with you there Mandi - in an ideal world it wouldn't matter, but in reality it can affect the way my patients view me,and their care and any preconceptions my coworkers and I may have will affect our working relationship. So it's much better to drag this out in the open, discuss and acknowlege cultural differences in attitudes and work it out together.
    ^5 bagladyrn

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