The Big Question – Ethnic monitoring shunned

Finance directors do not believe that institutes should be required to introduce ethnic monitoring of members, according to this week’s Accountancy Age/ Reed Accountancy Personnel The Big Question.

Over half of those questioned believed it would serve no purpose and could incite ill will rather than remove barriers, the survey of more than 200 FDs found.

Ovid Technologies international financial controller Sunil Patel said: ‘This could be setting a precedent which could lead to prejudice towards a particular ethnic minority if they are not numerous, sending out negative signals to that particular group.’

Many other respondents raised the point that achievement in the accountancy profession should be based on merit alone rather than on birthplace and parentage.

One-fifth of the survey remained neutral to the idea, but many added the proviso that ethnic monitoring should only be carried out if there was a perceived problem of discrimination.

Only 15% of respondents agreed that monitoring should definitely go ahead so that companies could be aware of the cultural make-up of their departments.

A further 11% of FDs believed that it should probably go ahead, again for the sake of keeping track of membership numbers and mix.

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