Structural Racism: The Sewer Men Of Mumbai

The Sewer Men Of Mumbai

Video source:

India’s caste system is responsible for many of its problems.   The caste systems are ill defined; the end result is a society ruled by structural racism– plain and simple!

Further, there is no need   to work under such conditions, risking one’s health and those of family and friends.

The ‘manhole workers’ or ‘shit people’ are ostracized,  marginalized by their neighbors and communities.     These workers hide their occupation, the odor being hard to conceal.  They are working to support their families like everyone else and deserve better conditions.  Why is this tolerated?   It is the  institutionalized component of structural racism.

Food for thought based on the above video:

  1. Twenty-five  manhole workers die every month;
  2. Eighty percent of these manhole workers die before age 60;
  3. They are the lowest of the lowest in India’s caste system.

Manhole workers are Outsiders within their own communities; they are  shit people and are looked down upon.    An example of structural racism  packaged differently and concealed in  ill-defined caste systems.

This is as shitty as it gets...
This is as shitty as it gets…

Author: Angela Grant

Angela Grant is a medical doctor. For 22 years, she practiced emergency medicine and internal medicine. She studied for one year at Harvard T. H Chan School Of Public Health. She writes about culture, race, and health.

6 thoughts on “Structural Racism: The Sewer Men Of Mumbai

  1. And to think I just commented in a forum where the question was raised how to deal with stress during the holiday season. I feel ashamed.

      1. It’s simply the fact that we can be concerned about trivial stuff like stress during stupid holiday seasons while forgetting there are people in this world who are really suffering!

        Um… comment in that forum was rather a sarcastic one, hehe.

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