News Article

UK - Bias Against Working-Class And Regional Accents Has Not Gone Away, Report Finds (The Guardian)

Posted 4th November 2022 • Written by •

A quarter, or 25%, of UK workers say their accents have been mocked at work, reports The Guardian, citing a report sponsored by the Sutton Trust and authored by Devyani Sharma, of Queen Mary University London. The report suggests that the problem of ‘accent bias’ has not gone away in the UK and many people with working-class or regional English accents fear their careers might suffer because of how they speak. Sharma said the results showed that a hierarchy of ‘accent prestige’ remained in British society, and needed to be tackled by employers.

“Accent-based discrimination actively disadvantages certain groups at key junctures for social mobility, such as job interviews,” Sharma said. “This creates a negative cycle, whereby regional, working-class and minority-ethnic accents are heard less in some careers or positions of authority, reinforcing anxiety and marginalisation for those speakers.” Meanwhile, 47% of university students and 46% of adults said their accents had been singled out or mocked in social situations. Public perceptions of accents had not changed over the past 50 years, the study found, with received pronunciation, sometimes known as BBC English or ‘the Queen’s English’, rated as the most prestigious accent in 2019, as it had been in similar surveys in 1969.

To read the original article click here

Click to see more Business News from People First Recruitment, London & UK specialists in recruitment for Mandarin speaking jobs, Japanese jobs, Language jobs and jobs in Supply Chain, Procurement and Demand Planning