A British graduate has been rejected for a job in a royal palace at Brighton because he is white, a media report said in London.
Kieron Keenan, a 23-year-old history graduate, was told he could not apply for the post of trainee museum assistant at The Royal Pavilion because he is not of African, Afro- Caribbean, Asian or Chinese descent.
The Brighton and Hove council applied the Race Relations Act to exclude white people from applying for the 9,000 pounds a year part-time post in order to help fill quotas of ethnic minority employees, 'The Daily Telegraph' said on Thursday.
The council had set itself a target that 4.5 per cent of its 8,000 workers would be from ethnic minorities by the end of March 2006, but achieved only 3.6 per cent.
"It's astonishing. In order to be seen to be less discriminatory towards ethnic groups the council has used a law which is blatantly discriminatory against another ethnic group," Keenan was quoted as saying in the report.
"Apparently it is perfectly legal. I feel very annoyed. To get a graduate job in the history field is very hard and I have been automatically barred because of my skin. I am perfectly qualified to do the job," he said.
Keenan, who recently graduated with a history degree from University College Chichester, said he had sent letters of complaint to the council.
A Brighton and Hove council spokesman said the job was a traineeship offered under what employers call "positive action" where there is a shortage of ethnic minority workers.
"It is lawful to offer training only for people from a certain racial group or to encourage people from that racial group to apply," he was quoted as saying by the daily.