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The voice of Scotland’s vibrant voluntary sector

Published by Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations

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Beatson issues hasty apology after rejecting Russian PhD student

 

Applicant had been rejected because they were Russian

The Beatson has rapidly reversed a decision banning a Russian PhD student from working with it on grounds of their nationality.

The prestigious cancer research charity faced criticism after it emerged that the applicant had been rejected because they were Russian.

The rejection was posted on Twitter by the applicant’s friend and said: “I have just been told that very recently the Beatson has established a new policy upon which I am unable to appoint you because you are Russian.

“I’m so deeply sorry for this. I find so [sic] unfair that what is going on in Russia affects very talented young scientists like you … I really hope that you can find a place to do your PhD!”

In a statement, Owen Sansom, director of the Cancer Research UK Beatson Institute, said it “does not have a policy of declining any applications from Russian students on the basis of their nationality”. 

He said: “Applications are considered on a case-by-case basis and offers are always reviewed against external checks, such as visa requirements or UK government sanctions. 

“In this case there was an initial misunderstanding of these restrictions, which has been addressed. 

“We have contacted the applicant involved to offer them a place and have apologised for any distress caused.

“We are reviewing our processes internally to prevent this issue from occurring again in future.”

The Equality Act 2010 prohibits discrimination in the workplace in respect of race, nationality, ethnic origins and national origins.

Victimisation against job applicants is also prohibited.

 

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