When staff accuse resident's of being racist?

  1. It was reported to me recently that one of my staff has voiced concern in more than one instance of resident's on their unit being racist. Now mind you this is a special care unit with dementia and Alzheimer's residents. My immediate thoughts on this matter is that the staff member is most likely not suitable to work on this unit. Yes, perhaps remedial training may be benificial, but not likely as this staff member has been there for more than a year. Management team members have said, "Employees have rights too." Yes, this is true, but we all must remember the type of resident we are caring of in this instance. I am very new to my position and have continuely encountered instances of the absence of training which I'm sure I can correct in time. For now I need an immediate resolution to this particular issue. What say you all?
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  2. 33 Comments

  3. by   Hopeslayer
    The best thing to do for all concerned is to arrange the assignments so the staff member you mentioned will not be assigned to that resident. Then hopefully, all will be happy.
  4. by   CapeCodMermaid
    Quote from Hopeslayer
    The best thing to do for all concerned is to arrange the assignments so the staff member you mentioned will not be assigned to that resident. Then hopefully, all will be happy.
    Hello from another Cape Cod person....never have seen all being happy and certainly some CNAs will be disliked and will dislike some residents. You can train all you want, but it's very hard to change a racist attitude of a demented resident. Things like this can lead to abuse so I agree about not assigning that CNA to that resident.
  5. by   nursedawn67
    I have to agree, not everyone is suited for eachother, I would reassign that CNA to someone else.
  6. by   ann945n
    I do not think you should put this CNA with other residents. Its an alzheimers unit, i worked in one for years. I had many times residents tell me the wackiest of things. I think this CNA needs some education about the disease and need to learn to work with people of all kinds. If this wasnt an alzheimers unit it would be a different story. But happens next when a resident yells at her or claims she steals from her? Happens all the time in those kinds of units, you have to learn to cope and redirect.
  7. by   TheCommuter
    This particular CNA needs to take the entire situation in perspective and know more about the disease process that her residents are experiencing. I work in LTC with a great deal of demented residents; in addition, I am black. I have heard slurs being hurled from a handful of demented residents such as 'black slaves', 'n*ggers', and so on.

    This specific CNA must realize that these people came from a different time in history where racism was the politically-correct thing to practice. These demented residents are not oriented to time and frequently think it is some year other than 2006. We all need to handle these residents with the utmost tact. However, I will always correct them if I hear a racial slur.

    I have my own creative way of handling demented residents who make racist remarks without being abusive. One gentleman, 102 years of age, walked to the nurses station and asked, "Who's in charge of all of these n*ggers?" My response to him was, "I'm in charge! Also, there are no n*ggers around here!"
  8. by   flashpoint
    I think the CNA should be reassigned. I once took care of a lady with Alzheimers who acxcused a male CNA of touching her in appropriately. After investigation, nothing was found, but once in a while this lady "remembered" that this CNA "touched" her. The CNA was reassigned for his protection and for the resident's protection. The facility didn't want this lady to be afraid of a caregiver, didn't want the CNA to feel frustrated with the resident, and didn't want to have any concerns if something did happen to the resident (like a bruise or a skintear) that the CNA would be accused of harming her our of frustration.

    I know the racist situation is not the same thing, but what if the resident eneded up with a bruise and told someone that "the ****** CNA hit me." Since concern has already been expressed, it could be easy for someone who doesn't know better to beleive that the CNA got tired of being called names and hit her. If she fell, it could be easy to assume that hte CNA was nto paying attention, or pushed her, or just let her fall instead of easing her to the ground or a chair.

    Whenever possible, if a resident (patient, client...) expressed concerns like this about a caregiver, they should be reassigned...it will provide peace of mind for the resident and it can protect the employee from false accusations.
  9. by   SuesquatchRN
    Quote from TheCommuter
    I work in LTC with a great deal of demented residents; in addition, I am black.
    Funny, you don't type black. (Sorry, couldn't resist.)

    I live in an incredibly white part of the world and coming from NYC it was a shock to me. I hear these words used by people frequently. The less racist still refer to black people as "colored." Scary stuff. That's the term I used until I was about 5, in 1958, when my folks taught me to say "negro." I was never allowed to use that other word. I was told that it was common, ignorant, and vulgar.

    If the resident is refusing care by the aide I would certainly schedule someone else for this resident. If the aide is being physically abused there's no question that she should be moved.

    She does need to learn, if the above isn't happening, not to be upset by demented people's statements. Demented means, well, crazy. And if you're black in, well, the world you'd better learn to deal with racist idiots before your head explodes.

    Sorry, I just saw "Hotel rwanda" and can't believe Cheadle didn't get the Oscar for that. I can't believe that film didn't get anything but a nomination. That was a true hero.

    Anyway. I'll shut up now. I'm only going to get myself into trouble.
  10. by   morte
    first, you need to determine the facts....just because "someone" told you this info, doesnt make it true.....ask the aide involved....even observe the aide interacting with that client.....before you believe anything....good luck
  11. by   lovingtheunloved
    Some people just don't understand that it's a different world behind the locked doors.
  12. by   flashpoint
    Sometimes a staff memeber just sets off a resident for no reason at all...they may look like someone they don't like, they may remind them of someone who once hurt them, they may look like the person who stole their boyfriend, whatever. In most cases, it is just "one of theose things" and no intervention is needed. But if it starts to make the staff member uncomfortable to have the resident lash out at them, I think employers have an obligation to protect the employee and reassigning is a very simple way to do that.
  13. by   TheCommuter
    Quote from Suesquatch
    She does need to learn, if the above isn't happening, not to be upset by demented people's statements. Demented means, well, crazy. And if you're black in, well, the world you'd better learn to deal with racist idiots before your head explodes.
    So very true. We must learn to deal with these hateful people with patience, intelligence, and the utmost tact. In addition, I am not going to allow a blatant racist to rent too much space inside my head.
    Quote from Suesquatch
    Sorry, I just saw "Hotel rwanda" and can't believe Cheadle didn't get the Oscar for that. I can't believe that film didn't get anything but a nomination. That was a true hero.
    I know this is not nursing related, but I saw "Hotel Rwanda" at the movie theater when it was first released two years ago (January 2005). It was a wonderful, finely-made film that deserved many more accolades.
  14. by   CHATSDALE
    we had a resident that c/o of being raped by all the staff, m/f, and no one really paid much attention..we had a new orderly, a younger gay man, who came to my office in a panic..swearing that he had not tounched resident

    i finally calmed down the orderly, whom i knew had not done anything but it go me to thinking...what if one day someone did abuse him, no one would believe him

    back to op point. reassignment of this cna is best but the problem with the resident is going to continue...just as a resident w/alheizmers reaches a point where they are incontinent so they reach a point where they cannot control what comes out of their mouth part of the job

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