Written by N'Dea Stewart
N'Dea Stewart is an incoming first year veterinary student at Louisiana State University. She is from Shreveport, Louisiana
Here's her experience:
I worked at an animal hospital and I was the only black worker there. I have suffered many micro aggressions while working from not only clients but my co-workers as well and I truly believe that they should start training in order to understand things from a minority perspective. I’ve had clients to make slick comments about me, saying that “I’m surprised to see her working here, I thought black people were afraid of dogs” or for instance a dog being bitten on the lip by a snake and being compared to JJ from Good Times because of his “big lips” (this was made by a vet). Some things are completely uncalled for and inappropriate and they should be addressed without fear of me getting out of line or pointed as an aggressor. I believe it is vital, especially with Veterinary Medicine being the whitest profession within the the US, that people are trained to know what’s offensive, what’s appropriate, and the importance of hiring a Staff with more than just a ONE black person/minority. Representative matters.
I wanted to [share this story] to bring awareness of the many micro aggressions that happen within the workplace so that it can be used to help educate and teach others.