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Racial and ethnic discrimination of the BAME comunities in the travel industry

Racial and ethnic discrimination of the BAME comunities in the travel industry
Author: Aleksandra Pacholska
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Travel and tourism industry gives freedom and ability for people to travel therefore the holidaymakers must feel safe and secure to decide upon visiting selected destinations. This paper focuses on the matter of BAME society and the problems they face during overseas travel. Racial and ethnic abuse is a significant problem, however, not limited to the home destinations as experienced worldwide causing significant travel disruptions.

Racism ideology has certainly restricted BAME society’s mobility and accessibility to many tourism destinations (Lee and Scott, 2017). Racial and ethnic harassment is experienced not only in developing tourist destinations but also at the top touristic points of visits. Countries named to be best travel developed destinations, such as the USA or the UK, are challenges for the BAME minority. The abuse towards the BAME society surrounds communities regarding their skin color, religious beliefs, or spoken language- thus not limited to those specific types.

The literature refers to racism as the process and approach were taken by the individuals and groups which categorise and stereotype the minority groups. The basic form of racial abuse refers to the personal characteristics of the communities such as skin colour or religious beliefs. The stigma of otherness reflects on all aspects that create the BAME community ‘different’ (Stephenson and Hughes, 2005).

A review of the literature presents multiple issues surrounded and focused on institutional racism. The BAME community experience the racial and ethical abuse in everyday life not excluding their experiences while travelling abroad. The report presents multiple cases where the BAME minority has been touched by the judgmental treatment of the border securities at airports due to the religious beliefs or the skin colour. The BAME communities due to the stereotypical thinking of communities are being massively controlled and detained at the UK and worldwide ports and airports. Citizens due to their personal characteristics are being inquisitioned regardless of the lack of the history of past terrorism acts or criminal records. The intelligentsia regardless of their position follows institutional racism. The officials overused and stereotyped over the minority groups rather than take into account the Terrorism Act 2000 and evidence of travellers illegal movements. Most of the time travellers from the BAME society are treated with a lack of respect and asked inconvenient questions (Stephenson and Hughes, 2005).

The relation of the intensified racial abuse is often connected to the attacks from the 11th of September in America. This is named to be a turning point for the ethnic minority travellers due to the ‘terrorism concerns’. Asian and Muslim holidaymakers are being subject to hostile treatment from immigration officials, aviation authorities, and other passengers. The ‘racialised others’ are potentially perceived as groups visiting destinations in the pursuit of criminal or illegal activities rather than pleasurable or educational visits (Scott and Lee, 2017).

The literature review states that people’s perception focuses on Islam representing direct “threat” to Europe and other countries. Thus Muslim residents regardless of their nationality are under intensified threat of racial and ethnic abuse from other groups of citizens. The reaction of the communities applies to the threat encountered by terrorism, nonetheless, communities forget the most important aspect of Muslims not being a direct danger and threat of terrorism. The BAME groups may not belong directly to the ‘enemy’ but the adherence to the Islamic norms and values makes them a target for hate crime and Islamophobic behaviours (Stephenson, 2006).

Following the literature review of the Islamophobic racialisation and institutional racism, many of the Muslim followers have been touched by the accusations and neglecting fact of their faith. The inconvenient questioning on the matters connecting strongly to terrorism proves the issue that the government must fix efficiently in order to keep the correct standards and connections with the minority groups (Stephenson, 2006).

The issues related to the BAME society are significant and can be seen in all of the minority groups creating it. This proves the issues not only surrounded within the destination communities but also with the lack of evident government improvements in that matter. The institutional racism should be monitored and essential improvements must be put in place in order to stop the racial and ethical harassment for the visitors but also citizens. The correct structure, knowledge, and support from intelligence can decrease the levels of BAME society abuse.

This paper focuses on the aspects that the minority has to face not only in day to day life but also during overseas travels. Although several issues have been presented within this work scope the essential literature reviewed the problematics of the BAME society. The selected topic has a wide variety of literature reviews nonetheless more up to date information would be needed in order to reflect on the situation from now and the past 10 years.

Lee, K.,J. and Scott, D. (2017) Racial Discrimination and African Americans’ Travel Behavior: The Utility of Habitus and Vignette Technique. Journal of Travel Research, Vol. 56(3) 381–392. Available from https://journals-sagepub-com.proxy.library.lincoln.ac.uk/doi/pdf/10.1177/0047287516643184?fbclid=IwAR3EU_2pOr_51I6i7phc8BM8bGuhXDfDgNR12AASGU5NXulruLN5aSnSNa8 [accessed 30 April 2020]

STEPHENSON, M.L, and HUGHES, H.L. (2005) Racialised boundaries in tourism and travel: a case study of the UK black Caribbean community. Leisure Studies, 24(2) 137-160, Available from https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/0261436052000308811?journalCode=rlst20 [accessed 30 April 2020]

Stephenson, M.L. (2006) Travel and the ‘Freedom of Movement’: Racialised Encounters and Experiences Amongst Ethnic Minority Tourists in the EU. 1(2) 285-306. Available from: https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/17450100600726662?needAccess=true&instName=University+of+Lincoln#aHR0cHM6Ly93d3cudGFuZGZvbmxpbmUuY29tL2RvaS9wZGYvMTAuMTA4MC8xNzQ1MDEwMDYwMDcyNjY2Mj9uZWVkQWNjZXNzPXRydWVAQEAw [accessed 30 April 2020]