Speaking native languages at work... - page 2

A Sacramento hospital this week passed around a questionare to its nurses. Here is the question... Diversity Council Needs You! To give us input on the question of staff members using their... Read More

  1. by   night owl
    They most certainly do have that right, but not when I'm standing there and I know they were discussing MY assignment. That was unprofessional, exclusinal and rude like you said. Now Rusty I might be able to plow through some spanish, but the very basics like Yo tengo, tu tienes or que ahora es? y Como se ama usted? Yo only took dos anos of it in HS muchos anos ago. I once read a book in spanish called "La Gitania" Cute huh? 8``````````````555555555q6-=[l;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;; (that was my new kitten on the keys...interpeted he typed "Hi Rusty" in Catinese)
  2. by   Rustyhammer
    I totally agree Michele.
    When discussing anything to do with work it should be in the language that EVERYONE understands.

    ps: I'm fairly fluent in Catinese
  3. by   Audreyfay
    I worked in Honolulu for 6 months. 90% of the nurses on my unit were Filipina nurses. The hospital policy was that english should be spoken in the hospital at all times, with the exception of working with a patient who did not know english and the caregiver was able to speak their language. Unfortunately, the staff did not abide by the policies. I would be sitting in the lounge, on break, with 3 other filipina nurses. Guess what they spoke? I was so uncomfortable. It certainly does not make one feel like they belong when they are excluded so royally. I would never treat anyone the same way and hopefully, others don't either.
    Needless to say, I left the unit, and the hospital. Nevermore to return. I also left Hawaii. It was not nice to be a minority. Especially a "haoli" (sp?) minority. Hawaii...a nice place to visit as a caucasian...a nightmare to live, unless one lives on the military base.
  4. by   rebelwaclause
    Good one NM...Wow! Perfect timing...I'm a wee bit annoyed right now over this topic. I understand that it is probably more that people who speak in their native tongues are more articulate in them, so the language is used instead of their second language of English. This is very understandable. But it is a bit rude to continue such conversations in the presence of others who do not understand their language. Think its done on purpose so others don't understand, or because its more familiar and struggling over correct English isn't priority at the time of the conversation? I know...this is the same question you've imposed here on this thread. I know you remember bay area hospital's and the diverse cultures that make up staff. Whew....Makes my head hurt...sometimes.
  5. by   SharonH, RN
    As long as they're not speaking to me, it doesn't matter what language they speak. I worked in a hospital in El Paso where the predominate language spoken was Spanish and yet I never felt excluded or threatened.
  6. by   micro
    Originally posted by adrienurse
    It really bugs me when I see people feeding our patients while carrying on a conversation, it makes me extra crazy when this conversation is not in english. It also agitates the resident and does nothing to add to thier quality of care. Remember, if it wasn't for the patients, you wouldn't have a job -- they are the reason you are here. You need to show some respect.
    as usual, you nail it..........

    patient/resident centered care.........imagine the concept.....................

  7. by   EXOTIC NURSE
    I think it is rude for a group of individuals to stand around at the nurses station and speak in their native tongue. It causes others to feel left out. I am fascinated with the different languages and I will learn as many as I can. Just to share a lil experience with everyone.....I was in Jamaica and I speak "Patios" very well and I understand it well one of the natives was speaking of me in a not so nice tone and I basically turned to her and told her I did not appreciate what she said about me as I have not done anything to her to deserve that statement ...and I said it in "Patios" and she looked at me and I said yes you never know what a person can do. I have many different races of friends and I am always asking them to help me to learn their native tongues so one should be careful as to what they say as you never know if a person know your native tongue.
  8. by   live4today
    originally posted by nmaguiar
    .................................................. ......

    in case you're wondering, here is my response:

    i was always taught that whispering in public was rude. it makes others around uncomfortable as to what is being discussed and is exclusive-not inclusive-- to others.

    speaking in a foreign language within earshot of patients, guests or co-workers who don't understand the dialect is the same as whispering. it alienates others and by its nature says "i'm speaking about something i don't want to share with you."

    in our hospital's very diverse environment, we all need to be especially sensitive to the cultures and backgrounds of others. no matter which of the dozens of languages spoken at (our hospital) we may understand, professionalism requires we adhere to the language we all speak fluently-- the one we used during our license exams and that all hospital
    documents are written in.
    well......i sure can't write or word this any better because i totally agree with your response, nmaguiar! :kiss
  9. by   live4today
    Originally posted by Audreyfay
    I worked in Honolulu for 6 months......................

    I also left Hawaii. It was not nice to be a minority. Especially a "haoli" (sp?) minority. Hawaii...a nice place to visit as a caucasian...a nightmare to live, unless one lives on the military base.
    Audreyfay.......I worked as a traveling nurse in Hawaii for that amount of time, and loved it! But, then again.......for the FIRST TIME IN MY LIFE, I was considered to be in the MAJORITY.....unlike what I'm called while living in the Mainland. :chuckle

    I can sympathize with you, but Hawaii made me so comfortable and well accepted that I will forever love those people. :kiss It's nice to be in another person's "skin" for a change in order to be able to feel for a "moment in time" what someone "different" than ourselves goes through from their birth to their death.....as I will always be looked upon as a MINORITY in The Mainland. If I ever want to feel "equal" again......guess I'll have to take another nursing tour of duty in Hawaii! :chuckle

    Thanks for sharing your experience......it brought back great memories for me......but sad thoughts of my Caucasian nursing buddies who worked alongside of me in Hawaii who were NOT treated fairly due to their racial makeup. No one ASKED to be born in their race.......we just happened into it by default of our DNA donors. :chuckle
    Last edit by live4today on Oct 6, '02
  10. by   pfleige

    You are in violation of allnurses posting rules and repetative posting of your website is being removed from posts that are not related.

    Please cease or your posting priveleges will be revoked, an action we really don't want to take.

    Last edit by P_RN on Oct 8, '02
  11. by   live4today
    Pilar......I bookmarked that site to review later.

    Hey Pilar.....I notice that you are living in Miami Beach, Florida. My husband is there right now going through a trauma course as part of his military duties. The course is given at Ryder Trauma Center. Are you familiar with that hospital, Pilar?

    Gracias, mi amiga! Buenos Noches, Pilar y Allnurses Siblings! :kiss
    Last edit by live4today on Oct 6, '02
  12. by   hapeewendy
    right now I work on a line of nurses where I am the only non phillipino speaking nurse...
    it doesnt bother me one bit that they converse in phillipino , I have benefited greatly by getting to know about a culture I had no clue about previously
    and the food, did I mention the food!??!?
    well yummmmmmmmmy!
    truthfully I do feel a little left out sometimes, not that I am paranoid and think they are badmouthing me or anything, it would just be nice to be able to join in the conversation sometimes
    but sadly I struggle enough with english as it is
    and yes incase youre wondering english is my first and only language
    doesnt mean I cant struggle with it sometimes, specially at 4am when I'm trying my damndest to be coherent !
  13. by   Mattigan
    It is rude. There were 2 docs here that would always pull that on us ( in Arabic)- and it was obvious they were saying something about the nurses. We started putting our heads together and pointedly whispering about them. They didn't like it either.