Reminiscences of anti-racism training in the 1980s

Jackie Sayers


During the 1980s I enthusiastically embarked on study at master’s level. My passion was anti-racism training for social work students. But work commitments, family, the complexity of the subject and life in general interceded and I failed in my commitment to complete my thesis despite having done most of the work. I feltI let the students down. Reflecting on this with colleagues recently,I was challenged to write something forthe 50th anniversary journal publication of Social Work Review. These are my memories backed up with a little bit of checking in past publications of NZASW (New Zealand Association of Social Workers) as it was then known.


anti-racism; 50th anniversary; social work education;

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Berridge, D., Cowan, L., Cumberland, T., Davys, A., McDowell, H., Morgan, J., & Wallis, P. (1984). Institutional racism in the Department of Social Welfare Auckland. Auckland: Department of Social Welfare.

Hospitals Advisory Council. (1972). Report of committee on means of improving training for social workers entering the Health Services. Wellington: Hospitals Advisory Council.

Ministerial Advisory Committee on a Maori Perspective for the Department of Social Welfare (September 1988). Puao-Te-Ata-Tu. Wellington.

New Zealand Committee on Means of Improving Training for Social Workers Entering the Health Services. (1972). New Zealand Hospitals Advisory Council.

NZASW Working Party on Racism. (1984). Race against time. New Zealand Social Work, 9(2).

de Serrallach, J. B. (1988). Social work and white racism. Social Work Review, 1(2).

Tauroa, H. (1982). Race against time. Human Rights Commission: Wellington.



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