The Disillusioned nurse

As she got herself ready for work, she wondered who she was working with this morning; it can make or break a shift. Dolly was a staff nurse in a care of the elderly ward for fifteen years. She had applied for a promotion several times, only to see each time, a less experienced colleague get the job.

When she asked for feedback, the interviewer would meet her just before the end of the working day, and would constantly look at her watch, as if she was in a hurry to leave. Dolly asked for a development plan, to help her improve her chances of promotion. She’s still waiting. Despite further nursing related studies, attending seminars and devising a new admission pack for the ward, Dolly is still a staff nurse.

It appears, looking in on this situation, that Dolly is being discriminated against, but she was always assured that she is a highly valued member of the team.

“Is it because of my skin colour?” she wondered. Dolly was the only black nurse in the unit, and promotion just seemed to be eluding her.

The shifts starts, and Dolly is nurse in charge, being the most experienced person on duty; the soon to be charge nurse is supporting her for the shift (the promotion is in another ward). As Dolly organises the shift, patient care, drug administration and ward round, she could feel resentment building up inside her.

“How does one prove racial discrimination?” “Maybe I’m making a mountain out of a molehill.”

At that moment, the senior nurse enters the ward, and Dolly goes to greet her, but she needn’t have bothered. The senior nurse went straight to the younger, less experienced colleague to discuss her new promotion, and then left the ward without speaking to Dolly. She felt invisible, and worthless. Dolly decided to contact her union rep to discuss taking out a grievance

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