The Pharmacists’ Defence Association’s anti racist pharmacy toolkit was launched at the 2022 Clinical Pharmacy Congress.
The event also included a demonstration of how members could use the toolkit to work together to address inequality and discrimination in their workplace.
Elsy Gomez Campos, president of the PDA BAME Pharmacists’ Network, gave an overview of issues raised by network members as well as broader professional issues including over-representation of BAME pharmacists in fitness to practice complaints, under-representation of BAME pharmacists in leadership roles, limited access to post-graduate education, and bullying and discrimination in the workplace.
She concluded her opening statement by reminding members of what an exemplary pharmacy profession should look like which is about “being treated fairly and being offered the same opportunities to those that do not look like us.”
Manuella Asso, organising assistant and PDA BAME Pharmacists’ Network coordinator, explained that the toolkit for was representatives, members, and other pharmacists to assess their workplaces and to help them take collective action to create an anti-racist workplace culture and environment.
She explained the PDA’s approach to the toolkit, which is based on Roger Kline’s ‘No More Tick Boxes’ research and uses PIPOW, a proven trade union organising framework that sets out a practical approach to support members to come together, assess their employer, and decide which areas in their workplace requires work.
Manuella said: “The toolkit can be adapted in different pharmacy settings, as the issues, evidence, and approach will vary from one employer to another. It’s important for members to collectively address issues at their employer.”
Angela Chiweshe, a member of the BAME Pharmacists’ Network, said: “The event was informative, I left feeling optimistic that tools are going to be made available to address some of the inequalities faced by pharmacists and to ensure that we are progressing as a profession, embracing diversity and encouraging transparency in our workplaces.”
Edwin Panford-Quainoo, another member, added: “I was really impressed with the toolkit and especially the fact that it can be applicable in multiple settings. It is well thought through and easy to follow. It is essential that the newly qualified pharmacists especially are supported through its use and application and get feedback from them as well. I can certainly see it evolving but the beginnings look very promising.