Labels, acronyms, gender pronouns, and symbols
BME, BAME and BEM
Government, statutory and other organisations use a range of systems to record and refer to ethnicity in the United Kingdom. Recording information in this way helps to monitor the uptake of services and employee recruitment in organisations.
BME, BAME and BEM are three acronyms (abbreviations) you may have heard of - perhaps in the news, when filling out surveys, or when applying to use a service.
- "Black and minority ethnic"- BME
- "Black, Asian and minority ethnic" - BAME
- "Black and ethnic minority" - BEM
For example, "Should BAME be ditched as a term for black, Asian and minority ethnic people?" was the headline from a BBC News 17 May 2018 article, and "Six in 10 UK health workers killed by Covid-19 are BAME" was the headline from a Guardian 25 May 2020 article.
Using categories are the subject to criticism and debate; for example, the nature of ethnicity, how or whether it can be categorised, and the relationship between ethnicity, race, and nationality. While they can be catchy and convenient, acronyms not necessarily widely understood and can have negative and hurtful undertone for some.
Classification of ethnicity in the United Kingdom | Wikipedia
Institute of Race Relations (IRR)
Ethnicity facts and figures | GOV.UK
Please, don't call me BAME or BME! | Civil Service (Blog) | 8 Jul 2019
Should BAME be ditched as a term for black, Asian and minority ethnic people? | BBC 17 May 2018
Is it time to ditch the term ‘black, Asian and minority ethnic’ (BAME)? | The Guardian | 22 May 2015
Visibility | BAME Voices | Stonewall | 27 Nov 2018 | 2m 21s
Race | BAME Voices | Stonewall | 27 Nov 2018 | 3m 33s
Culture | BAME Voices | Stonewall | 27 Nov 2018 | 2m 53s
Religion | BAME Voices | Stonewall | 27 Nov 2018 | 4m 40s
Gender | BAME Voices | Stonewall | 27 Nov 2018 | 5m 28s
Related internal links to other parts of this website
Black Lives Matter Movements, and learning resources | MEN R US
QTIBPOC and QPOC | MEN R US
Racism and gay men | MEN R US
Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic LGBT+ organisations | MEN R US
How to be an ally | MEN R US
The word is out | MEN R US