e been made to eliminate racism through community awareness, education, legislation, training of community service workers as well as planned attempts to try to cater for all segments of the society. Racism at all levels of a society including institutional, personal and structural, can be particularly difficult for the older people because of the psychological damage that it can cause. Social workers and those who are managing social services have to be aware of and be prepared to counter any racism that the encounter. This brief essay takes a look at the impact of racism on social work practice with older people in the United Kingdom.
Older adults have been increasing in number in the industrialised countries as a result of the demographic changes which have taken place in these countries due to low birth rates and a high quality of health care that is provided to the citizens (Roberts, 2002, Pp. 1 -3). Many of these older adults are not from the mainstream racial or cultural background which is to be found in such countries and their presence has been the result of the immigration which has taken place into these countries which include the United States of America, Canada, United Kingdom, Australia and New Zealand. The immigration policies of these countries have been in line with their requirements for economic development, but these policies have also meant that the immigrant accepting societies have also a responsibility towards providing care of the elderly migrants who have contributed to their new countries in their younger years. The United Kingdom is now moving towards becoming a cohesive and well integrated society which includes citizens who were formerly from many Commonwealth countries such as Pakistan, India, Hong Kong, West Indies, South Africa and Nigeria etc, to name a few. The government in the United Kingdom has been conscious of its responsibilities to the society and a considerable effort has been made by the government to ensure that