Guest Post: A Chinese Family Refused To Hire Me Because I’m Black | Speaking of China

17 Responses

  1. Sorrel
    Sorrel August 26, 2016 at 3:03 pm | | Reply

    Tough break, but you would probably not have been happy living with the ‘disapproval’ of one or more family member.
    I suspect that the woman you were talking to was expressing her own dislike, but deflecting it onto to someone else to avoid a difficult conversation.

    With adequate preparation, maybe contacting any UK based (registered) Au-pair organisation, you will find a place you are happy with.
    Because remember YOU are supposed to enjoy the experience too, as well as live, work and learn in China

  2. David
    David August 26, 2016 at 8:13 pm | | Reply

    Not surprising…

    They don’t like dark skinned Singaporeans or Indians either! Although I see a lot of BMAW couples here in the DC area, most of the women are darker skinned.

  3. Sarah
    Sarah August 26, 2016 at 9:03 pm | | Reply

    Well I think its unfortunate, but as they say plenty more fish in the sea,
    I mean the aupair and the family have to be the right fit for each other.
    I’d say most people who read this will sympathize with you.
    But there’s nothing anyone can do about it.
    Families are entitled to have preferences, this particular family wanted someone from the west and asides from the other comments, you didn’t meet that.

  4. Eileen黃愛玲
    Eileen黃愛玲 August 27, 2016 at 10:16 am | | Reply

    I find it hard to comment, let’s see if I can do this:

    I am sorry that you have encountered this but like you, I am also not surprised. I was trying to find a job in Shanghai and was shocked that some of the job classifieds go beyond weight and gender…some went as far to say, “No Jews,” even one said, “German is better.” Sheesh.

    I wish you luck in the future.

    1. Henry Yeh
      Henry Yeh August 31, 2016 at 5:17 am | | Reply

      There’s a pathological affinity for Nazi Germany among young males in China & East Asia in general. WWII German military uniforms are one of the hottest selling items in China & Japan. The faux-antisemitism is mere an attempt to emulate their “idols”.

    2. Linda
      Linda September 5, 2016 at 11:11 pm | | Reply

      Thanks for sharing Eileen. Wow, I had no idea that was even possible!

  5. Lao Zhang
    Lao Zhang August 27, 2016 at 6:12 pm | | Reply

    It is nothing surprising given that so many people in China sitll think Africa as the name for underdevelopment of a lot of things apart from economy. The part of my hometown in China which was full of illegal and makeshift housing many years ago was named ruthlessly and with irony “Village of Africa”. The recent arrest of athletics who returned from Rio Olympics by Zimbabwe police better testifies this viewpoint. And people in China are very realistic, if they think they cannot get something in return they would not have a try.

  6. David
    David August 27, 2016 at 10:56 pm | | Reply

    For many people around the world Au Pair=white and Maid=Non-white. Knew an expat who lived in Hungary. His white American wife had a tough time contemplating a white maid from Bosnia and tried her best to get a non-white dark skinned maid from abroad (South India or Sri Lanka), but the government did not oblige.

  7. David
    David August 27, 2016 at 11:53 pm | | Reply

    As I said, in Asia, dark=the help, au pair=light skinned

  8. Alice - Kiwi in Korea
    Alice - Kiwi in Korea August 29, 2016 at 10:37 pm | | Reply

    Sadly I’m not surprised to read this.

    I think the author’s attitude is great though! I’m not if I would be able to be as forgiving if I were discriminated against for any reason.

    1. Linda
      Linda September 5, 2016 at 11:13 pm | | Reply

      Thanks for your kind words Alice ????

  9. Jen
    Jen September 6, 2016 at 10:03 pm | | Reply

    Wow. I’m really sorry to hear this happened to you. :/ It’s great that you’re so positive about this, but these comments about “preferences” and “right fit” anger and disappoint me. Refusing to hire someone on the basis of their skin color is straight-up racism, and that’s not acceptable in 2016.

    I have a Chinese friend who choreographed a major event in Beijing and she asked the director if she could cast black people. He said “不要太黑就行” (okay, just not too dark). China has a long, long way to go.

  10. TLAG
    TLAG May 31, 2017 at 7:15 pm | | Reply

    There are a lot of people from Africa living in the city where I am staying at the moment!

    Sometimes I think alot of problems occur are due to misunderstandings and not so much related to discrimination.

    It is just so complicated! For examplpe, if you purchase a phone sim card in China, there is a monthly rental fee that charge by the telecom carriers. All Chinese knew about this, but some African visitor don’t understand this. So, when the monthly fee been deduct from their account, they think that the sim card seller cheated their money! And this is not the case!

    There are many more examples about these misunderstanding! Many people just too lazy to understand each other!

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