Civil Service attacked over lack of Asian staff

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The Independent Online
The small number of Asians in the Civil Service and particularly in the higher ranks is a cause for "national shame", a Labour MP has claimed.

Keith Vaz, MP for Leicester East, who today publishes a report, "The Glass Ceiling - Asian Representation in the Civil Service", said his findings belied Britain's claim to be a non-racial society.

Mr Vaz said the report was particularly disturbing coming in the wake of Lord Tebbit's comments on the "divisive" influence of multi-culturalism. "The figures make disturbing reading," he said.

The report found the percentage of Asians in the Civil Service to be 2.03 per cent, 1.5 per cent lower than the overall proportion of Asians in Britain; Asians are concentrated in the lower grades; only a handful are in the senior Civil Service, all in the lower paybands; and Asians are particularly poorly represented in the Foreign Office and MoD.

The report, based on answers to parliamentary questions, recommends that all government departments and agencies draw up action plans to ensure staff become representative of the ethnic groups in society.