The NHS Race and Health Observatory (RHO) has launched a public survey to gather views on the kind of language to use when talking about race and ethnicity. Terms such as BAME and BME are becoming less popular, and the government has recently issued guidance about using the term ‘ethnic minority’ as the default. The Observatory recognises that language can have a real impact on policy decisions, and they want to have a conversation with the communities they work with before deciding what language to use. They are already committed to using specific terms wherever possible and avoiding acronyms such as BME. Even so, they know that there will sometimes be a need to refer to all communities who are not part of the White British ethnic group. This survey explores preferences for this collective terminology.
The survey closes on the 10th August, after that the RHO will hold a series of roundtable discussions to explore people’s preferences more deeply. The outcome will be published in the Autumn.