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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.
 

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New York to ban sale of foie gras

News Story 1
 New York City councillors have voted overwhelmingly in favour of legislation that will see the ban of foie gras in the city. The move, which comes in response to animal cruelty concerns, will take effect in 2022.


 Councillor Carlina Rivera, who sponsored the legislation, told the New York Times that her bill “tackles the most inhumane process” in the commercial food industry. “This is one of the most violent practices, and it’s done for a purely luxury product,” she said.


 Foie gras is a food product made of the liver of a goose or duck that has been fattened, often by force-feeding. New York City is one of America’s largest markets for the product, with around 1,000 restaurants currently offering it on their menu. 

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News Shorts
Humane Slaughter Association student scholarships open for applications

Applications for the Humane Slaughter Association’s student/trainee Dorothy Sidley Memorial Scholarships are now open.

The Scholarships provide funding to enable students or trainees in the industry to undertake a project aimed at improving the welfare of food animals during marketing, transport and slaughter. The project may be carried out as an integral part of a student's coursework over an academic year, or during the summer break.

The deadline for applications is midnight on the 28 February 2020. To apply and for further information visit www.hsa.org.uk/grants or contact the HSA office.