04:31 GMT24 June 2021
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    MOSCOW (Sputnik) - The UK National Health Service (NHS) must put efforts into tackling "white privilege" among senior staff and stepping up black and minority ethnic (BAME) representation on leadership positions, Sarah-Jane Marsh said in an interview with the Sky News broadcaster.

    "I think there is white privilege, I think there are people having unconscious bias, there are people coming to interview and not performing because they see a panel in front of them that do not believe in diversity, and I want to do something to change that," chief executive of Birmingham Women's & Children's NHS Trust Sarah Marsh said.

    According to Marsh, NHS senior staff insufficiently represents the diversity of the society, while the national health service is heavily reliant on BAME support workers.

    "There are only a handful of BAME chief executives in the NHS, then when you get to board and just below board level the figures drop away, certainly in comparison to the workforce. If we did not have BAME staff we would not have an NHS," she stressed.

    READ MORE: UK Has Failed to Eliminate Deficit Despite Cuts to NHS, Police — Labour Official

    The executive pledged that she would stop sitting on any interview board panel that did not include a BAME member, stressing that promoting diversity at all levels would help the NHS to get the best possible staff.

    According to the latest figures, 18 percent of the 1.2 million NHS staff are from a BAME background, with 27 percent of them being lowest paid support staff, compared to only five percent of very senior managers, the broadcaster noted.


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    ethnic groups, diversity, National Health Service (NHS), United Kingdom
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