Discrimination Rife in Hospitality

16th June 2023

A third of people in hospitality have experienced discrimination while working, according to a report by Be Inclusive Hospitality.  The third edition of the Inside Hospitality Report 2023 report, which surveyed over 3,000 hospitality workers across the UK, found that just under 85% of respondents at the director level have witnessed discriminatory behaviours.

The report found that one-in-three overall have ‘witnessed and experienced’ discrimination at work. For Black and Asian respondents who answered “yes” to witnessing discriminatory behaviour, 62.4% of Asian and 62.6% of Black respondents cite racial bias as the most prevalent form of discrimination. Higher proportions of respondents in nightclubs, pubs and bars reported experiencing and witnessing discrimination, with 43% saying they have “low levels of confidence” in the company’s ability to address discrimination in the workplace. This is especially the case for ethnic minorities. Only 52.4% of participants who encountered discriminatory behaviour in their workplace had the opportunity to report this.

Meanwhile, only a third of respondents who did file a complaint were satisfied with the handling of this complaint. The report also found that there remains a perception that the industry is “less fair” when it comes to race, age, and disability.

Lorraine Copes, founder and chief executive of Be Inclusive Hospitality, said: “Over the last three years, we have seen the number of respondent numbers increase from over 300 in 2020 to over 3,000 today. I believe that this increase positively marks a growth in awareness and support for the work that we do. What is concerning is that the results surrounding discrimination, education at all levels, and the building of trust have remained stagnant. With this robust data set, my hope is that leaders now take heed and take action.”