Cookie use on MRCVSonline
We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you continue without changing your settings, we will assume that you are happy to receive all cookies.
If you would like to forward this story on to a friend, simply fill in the form below and click send.

Your friend's email:
Your email:
Your name:
 
 
Send Cancel

Landmark report sheds light on discrimination 
Sex discrimination was the most common type reported and was particularly prevalent in academic settings and production animal, equine and mixed practices.

BVA launches ‘Big Conversation’ after “truly shocking” findings 

Nearly a quarter of vets and vet students have experienced or witnessed discrimination in the past year, according to a landmark report by the BVA.

Figures show 16 per cent of vets and vet students surveyed had personally experienced discrimination within a veterinary workplace or learning environment in the past 12 months.

Despite this, only 56 per cent of respondents said they were concerned about discrimination.

Senior colleagues were most commonly responsible for the discrimination, accounting for nearly half of all incidents (47 per cent), while clients accounted for 35 per cent of incidents.

Worryingly, only 12 per cent of respondents were satisfied with how their incident had been handled, which rose to 23 per cent among those who felt able to report the incident.

Sex discrimination was the most common type reported (44 per cent of incidents) and was found to be particularly prevalent in academic settings and production animal, equine and mixed practices.

Race discrimination was the second most commonly reported, accounting for 27 per cent of incidents. Survey participants also reported discrimination relating to age, sexuality, disability and gender reassignment.

Younger vets were more likely to have experienced discrimination than older vets - 27 per cent of those under 35 had experienced discrimination. Female vets were more than twice as likely to experience discrimination than their male colleagues - 19 per cent and eight per cent respectively.

The prevalence of discrimination was also higher among vets from minority ethnic backgrounds, and those who described their sexual orientation as bi, gay or lesbian were more than twice as likely to have experienced discrimination.

'Big Conversation'
BVA’s junior vice-president Daniella Dos Santos called the findings “truly shocking”.

She added: “It is completely unacceptable that so many members of the veterinary team are subject to discrimination not just from clients but from members of our own profession.
 
“Worryingly, it seems that the scale of the issue will come as a surprise to many members of our profession and so it is vital that we all join the conversation and reflect on what role we can play to improve equality and inclusion.

"The veterinary team must become a safe and supportive environment for everyone. We cannot accept anything less for ourselves, for our colleagues and for our profession.”

The BVA is asking all members of the profession to get involved in its ‘Big Conversation’ on equality and inclusion, which is launching this week. Veterinary teams across the UK will be able to join online engagement sessions and BVA members are being asked to share their views with regional representatives ahead of a council meeting on 24 July.
 

Become a member or log in to add this story to your CPD history

AWF Student Grant open for submissions

News Story 1
 Applications are open for the Animal Welfare Foundation (AWF) Student Grant Scheme for innovative research projects designed to impact animal welfare.

Undergraduate and postgraduate students of veterinary science, veterinary nursing, agriculture studies and animal welfare are invited to submit their proposals to undertake research projects next year.

Grants are decided based on the project’s innovation, relevance to topical animal welfare issues and ability to contribute towards raising animal welfare standards. For more information visit animalwelfarefoundation.org.uk.  

Click here for more...
News Shorts
SPANA film highlights plight of working animals overseas

Animal welfare charity SPANA (The Society for the Protection of Animals Abroad) has teamed up with Brian Blessed and other famous voices to highlight the plight of working animals overseas.

In a new animated film, the celebrities raise awareness by showing the solidarity of the UK's own working animals on strike. A sniffer dog (Brian Blessed), police horse (Peter Egan) and sheepdog (Deborah Meaden) are shown ignoring their duties and protesting in solidarity with animals in developing countries.

SPANA chef executive Geoffrey Dennis said: "We are so grateful to Deborah, Peter and Brian for lending their voices to our new film, and for speaking up for millions of working animals overseas. SPANA believes that a life of work should not mean a life of suffering, and it is only thanks to people’s generosity and support that we can continue our vital work improving the lives of these animals."