Are you afraid to approach minority staff members? WHY? - page 5

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   semstr
    I can honestly say here, I don't give a s..t whether someone "belongs" to minorities (or whatever the political right expression is now- a- day), I care about human beings, point made and out.
  2. by   shabookitty
    I work in the lab with predominately black females. And I am from GA where you would think there would be tension...but there's not. I relate to people based on gender sometimes...this is probably a bad thing I guess. I see the shared qualities in gender. "We are just a bunch of chics working in a lab" We cut up and have the best time...and we teach each other, confide in each other...No, I think the most intimidating thing was being "new" for me. The thing that intimidates me even more is my older supervisor. Which I have to approach tomorrow and my nerves itch thinking about it! Older ppl in higher positions make me nervous. I have a younger supervisor and I feel like I could tell her the world! Strange?
    Last edit by shabookitty on Oct 16, '02
  3. by   LasVegasRN
    Originally posted by shannonRN left out the part about beating all of your nurses with that big ole coach purse of yours because they are trying to steal from you!
    Oh, that goes without saying. They will also know to take off running if they see someone holding it for me. :chuckle
  4. by   Sleepyeyes
    I had a nurse angrily accuse me of being a racist one afternoon. Well, I really needed to get off the floor and take a much-needed break, and I wasn't interested in listening to any crap.

    I heard her rant, "You just don't have any respect for me as a professional; I think you're a RACIST!"

    I stood there a second and let it sink in that she'd just MAJORLY overreacted. I sighed, rolled my eyes, looked her straight in the eye and said quietly, "Yes I do, and no I am not a racist."

    I didn't want to explain that my grandmother was Spanish and my niece's dad is black, and blood's thicker than stereotypes; that nurse was just plain having a bad day.

    However, I ran into one of her buds on break and "somehow" the subject of racism came up. I denounced racism of any kind by saying, "Now how could I possibly explain this to my little 7-year-old niece?"

    I did get a giggle out of it when someone was downing Hispanics and I said, grinning over a bite of my sandwich, "Hmmm....well, some of us have gotten so absorbed into the mainstream culture, you just wouldn't know, for instance, that my Gramma was Castilian Spanish--but my sister got the olive skin, so it's almost not fair, huh?"
    Shuts 'em up real quick. heehee
  5. by   semstr
    sleepeyes: ol!!!
  6. by   LasVegasRN
    This thread is going wonderfully. Now this is the kind of discussion that we need to gain mutual understanding! Carry on!
  7. by   rebelwaclause
    Let me play the devil for a minute....

    I read a lot of posts that imply immunity from prejudices because a Cousin's-Uncle's-Sister's-Dads-Next door neighbor was Black/White/Hispanic/Filipino...whatever. I'm not saying it doesn't matter - Sure, being around another culture does educate you and allow opportunities to become familiar and comfortable. But it doesn't mean you respect or admire the culture. It doesn't mean you automatically stop stereotyping cultures in ways that can be deemed as racist.

    Sorry if I sound a little ornery. Just came from another thread dealing with a similar topic. Just wanted to give you something to think about.
    Last edit by rebelwaclause on Oct 20, '02
  8. by   zudy
    No, rebel, I think thats an excellent point
  9. by   nursenoelle
    Originally posted by LasVegasRN
    This thread is going wonderfully. Now this is the kind of discussion that we need to gain mutual understanding! Carry on!

    I agree , very cool thread guys. :kiss

  10. by   researchrabbit
    Originally posted by LasVegasRN
    Maybe in a couple of years I'll be Noir Humanoid. WHO KNOWS. I'll be one of those crotchety old hags grumbling to myself in the nursing home and pinching the male CNA's butts. Happily.
    Thanks for my laugh of the day!!!
  11. by   nursegoodguy
    Why do I find these things when I have to start getting ready for work! Okay, just two minutes...
    Where I live/work the majority of people are either hispanic or native american.
    We have two black people in management positions, the admin is hispanic, don is white, another nurse in management is native american, a good ethnic mix I guess? All I know is that they all do a great job and I couldn't think of any better people to do what they are doing! Most of the workers are hispanic/native american. Many of the people have 'mixed' families! I've never seen any problem related to race... I take that back there was one time when we all had to get fingerprinted a few years back and there was no place for hispanic as a race... one of the girls who is hispanic said, "I'm not checking white, I'll check other, I hate whites!" I told her to go to a real city where more than two cultures are represented and she see just how 'white' she was! A nurse was moving back to NYC and needed volunteer drivers... this girl was one of them and when she came back she was telling me about meeting some guys from spain and when she told them she was spanish they laughed at her and said she was not spanish, she was a white girl! I explained that they were probably right off the boat and her family has been here for generations! I don't understand that prejudice? We're our ancestors not all from Europe? Because mine were Irish/Italian and hers were Spanish does it really make us all that different? What gives her the right to consider me 'white'?
    Maybe someone could help me answer this one...
    One other time I worked with a black man whom I got into this discussion with... First it had to do with him going to gay bars with his friends... unhuh... he said if a guy came on to him he'd hit him... I said, then stay out of gay bars and just think about it... I have girls come on to me at work... should I hit them too? Then it went into race... he said he believed that the races should be kept seperate... I asked what about Marti Luther King and his speech I have a dream... He said the new thought was not anything like his I have a dream speech and then went on to justify keeping the races seperate... I told him that eventurally there would be only one race, a nice blended race! He disagreed and I had to point out, just look around you at work! Would you have seen so many blended families even twenty years ago, a hundred years ago... I do believe that if this planet survives then we will be one race and I really do think it is a good thing! One less thing to fight about...
    Now can I get ready in 15 minutes?
  12. by   bagladyrn
    Please keep in mind that racism and prejudice and assumptions about the characteristics of "other" races cuts in all direction, NOT just from the whites,anglos, caucasians, whatever label you prefer toward others. Any time you make assumptions as to my attitude from my appearance, you are guilty of racism. If you want to know what I (individual) think of you (individual) ask - I'll tell you. And I won't be guilty of another form of predjudice by withholding my opinion for fear of being labelled.
    Yes, I have lived in places where I was clearly a minority and been on the receiving end of poor treatment. Sadly, it bounced back on the people who were perpetuating it - for example, while living on the reservation, the teachers were pleased to have a child (my son) who came from the cultural matrix which enabled him to test well on standardized tests. They saw this as a way to get the materials which would benefit many children in the schools who did not qualify on paper as gifited simply because many did not learn English until starting school and approached testing from a different experience. Unfortunately, the local school board refused to get the appropriate teaching materials because the child in question was not native american, even though he lived in this community and was a registered student of the school. So a whole group of students lost out, and the already underserved hospital lost another nurse when I had to move away to help my son academically.
  13. by   healthcarespani
    I am impressed that this discussion is taking place! I am not a nurse myself, but I conduct diversity trainings with nurses quite frequently and it can be VERY challenging.

    It is especially difficult for me to be objective when someone is complaining about Hispanic staff members (or minorities in general for that matter). I think most of the time the confusion comes from a lack of respect and lack of understanding about diverse cultures.

    I also followed the discussion about staff speaking languages other than English on the job. I was surprised to see how many people seemed bothered by this.