Speaking Up as a Black Nurse in NHS Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin
Ewuradjoa Phillips-Odoom (AJ) is a sister on Day Surgery at Princess Royal Hospital. AJ spoke up after concerns about racism from a patient. Colleagues were feeling sad, unworthy and disrespected, and for AJ, it brought back memories of racism she had faced in the past.
AJ submitted a Datix and spoke to management who were fully supportive. AJ felt that there needed to be better processes in place to support colleagues with experiences of discrimination, similar to how patients are supported through PALS.
AJ was encouraged to contact Freedom to Speak Up (FTSU) but was reluctant as she wasn’t sure how they could help.
Chan from the FTSU team visited AJ and her manager on the ward and they shared their experiences and frustrations. Chan listened and thanked them for raising their concerns.
Since AJ raised her concerns, new processes have been put in place to better manage Datix submissions under the category “allegations of discrimination", to ensure colleagues are supported when facing discrimination.
AJ said: “I feel listened to, by both my manager and the FTSU team. I am so grateful and feel like together we’ve made positive change for all members of staff.”
Mukaya Mukanga, People Advisory Manager, said:
“It is vital that our colleagues are cared for, and our colleagues can work safely without the fear of ill-treatment. As a result, we have taken steps to improve processes and procedures. These include the creation of the work without fear flow chart, which guides colleagues through steps to be followed if incidents occur. The People Advisory team is now informed when a Datix is raised with concerns of a discriminatory nature to ensure a robust approach to investigating matters and providing a resolution. In addition, we are partnering with the Datix team to review incidents within the last 12 months.”