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‘Pharmacy needs to move to being actively anti-racist’

Community pharmacy must fight the systemic racism in the sector instead of staying silent, Mohammed Hussain says

In the wake of Black Lives Matter protests, people across pharmacy have been speaking out against racial injustice in the sector. Mohammed Hussain, a Royal Pharmaceutical Society (RPS) fellow, says in C+D’s latest podcast that more needs to be done.

“We need to move from our current position to actively being anti-racist,” says Mr Hussain. “It's not enough to just not be racist, we need to do much more than that. And we need to have a conscious and purposeful agenda to act against bias.

“It’s important to recognize that we’re not just talking about any one individual. I don’t think we have many racist individuals within pharmacy. What I do think we have is a structure and systems that lead to biased racial outcomes."

Listen to the podcast to hear from Mr Hussain, who is also NHS Digital senior clinical lead, on:

  • The need for addressing our discomfort in talking about race
  • The lack of black representation in leadership positions in pharmacy
  • Racial disparity in pay gap, fitness-to-practise reports and pre-registration pass rates
  • Improving COVID-19 risk assessments of BAME individuals
  • How the RPS should be "less defensive" when handling BAME issues

The views expressed in the podcast represent Mr Hussain's alone.

In response to Mr Hussain’s comments, the RPS told C+D: “We’re on a journey with our inclusion and diversity work to create positive change in our profession. We welcome all points of view to inform this work and recognise the importance of RPS taking meaningful action in this area.”

You can listen to the podcast below. Alternatively, subscribe to C+D's podcasts on iTunes or by searching “Chemist+Druggist podcast” on your preferred Android podcast app.

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