Instances of “systemic racism” are putting off nurses from working in Ireland, a group representing nurses from overseas has claimed.
One quarter of all newly registered nurses in Ireland are from overseas but Migrant Nurses Ireland says that some of them find life here does not always meet their expectations:
“Ireland has only had a history of migration for 20, 25 years,” Vinu Kaippilly from the organisation explained to The Pat Kenny Show.
“So those nurses who came here 10 years back had a different experience because then it was a very small number and they’ve been kind of accepted and integrated into the community very easily and well.
“But the scenario has changed. As I mentioned before, the number of nurses coming to Ireland is huge at the moment. The change in that demography changed actually the approach of the Irish people, I’d say.”
“Even at work there’s a bit of systemic racism - that’s what we’re hearing. We’re hearing from all different institutions - even the HSE or a private [institution].
“There’s a bit of system racism happening and that’s affecting the daily life of the Irish nurses.”
Other problems are the high cost of living and housing crisis - issues which many are not fully aware of before they arrive:
“When they try and bring their families, they can’t find a place to accommodate them,” Mr Kaippilly continued.
“What they’re trying to do now is try to migrate to other countries when they hear or when they see things like a lack of acceptance or systemic racism issues [and] it’s really going to affect the reputation of the country.
“And we actually need nurses to work [here] because we have a huge shortage of nurses.”
Main image: A nurse washing her hands when leaving a room.