Researcher underlines racism in Oz job market: ‘Was asked to change my name’

  • HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times, Chandigarh
  • Updated: Jan 10, 2015 21:12 IST

An Indian-origin teacher from the University of Western Sydney (UWS) pointed to racism affecting migrants’ job prospects in Australia and also underlined the caste system as its equivalent in India, at a workshop held in partnership with UWS by the Panjab University (PU) on its campus here on Saturday.

Talking to HT, researcher Renu Narchal also talked of how she too faced discrimination. “People from India do face racism in Australia. I had shifted there after my husband went there. I applied at two Australian universities but they rejected me, though I was well-qualified and earlier teaching at Delhi University (DU). I had to work at a child protection cell (of Australian government) for about two years before I got the job at UWS,” she said adding, “Some people change their names; for instance, from Anu to Angelia. I was given that suggestion, but I did not do it. However, things are improving in Australia.”

She underlined, though: “Racism exists in India too, in the form of caste. Once when I started teaching a boy who used to collect garbage from homes, the neighbours objected.”

Narchal has researched on job-seeking experiences of foreign students in Australia and has found that people have been rejected because of racism.

She has also noted that after migration the families face problems of housing, employment, adjusting to the education system, social structures and cultural norms, besides language. But accompanying children help in acting as family translators.

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