EPSU and its affiliates strongly condemn racist practices within the Swedish care system

(8 June 2017) Several public authorities in the North of Sweden have offered elderly people the right to refuse their caregivers on the basis of their skin colour or of their immigrant background (read newspaper’s article in English or in Arabic). EPSU and its Swedish affiliates unconditionally reject and condemn these racist practices

This abysmal practices have to be taken seriously and strongly opposed, says Eva-Lotta Nilsson, Head of Bargaining and Negotiation at Vision.  Nilsson says, ‘the right to refuse ”foreign” care staff is of course totally unacceptable and risks normalizing xenophobia and racism at the workplace’. She adds, ‘Vision and the employers´ organizations, both at national level and European level through the Social Dialogue, share the view of the importance of diversity and equal treatment in all aspects of the working life and society’.

EPSU General Secretary Jan Willem Goudriaan expressed his indignation regarding this development, stating, ‘public services have to be the spearhead against discriminations. Local and regional social dialogue has to keep up its efforts to make public authorities inclusive for all’. That is the reason why the EPSU unconditionally joins its Swedish affiliates to resolutely condemn this discriminatory practice.

EPSU notes that recent Guidelines have been published by the Social Partners in Local and Regional Government (EPSU and the Council of European Municipalities and Regions, see here. EPSU and its Swedish affiliates, Vision and Kommunal, note that historically they organize care workers in the country. The organizations are committed to guarantee the quality of public services and to improve the working conditions of all,  without exception.