Based on my own experiences and of those around me, I decided to look into whether or not there was differential treatment of ethnic minority women in Irish maternity hospitals. Having read through a copious amount of literature of similar studies that have taken place in America and in the UK, I thought it would be pretty easy to do something similar here in Ireland...wrong. Before I go into the challenges I faced, It would be smart to explain my methodology for the project.
- Firstly, once I started analysing the results of the questionnaires I quickly realised that I couldn't use a third of the online responses as these candidates did not finish the whole survey. This significantly reduced my sample size. But, I kept sharing the survey where I could and it did result in more responses throughout the summer.
- A second challenge was that most of the people who responded were from the Black (African) racial group, which didn't really help for comparison. However, before sending out the survey my supervisor and I decided to add 2 more racial groups to the questionnaire: "White Irish", and "Any other white". The logic behind this was that it would be beneficial to have a control group. Again, with pushing the survey out a bit more and even reaching out to individuals on more platforms, we were able to increase the number of responses from Non-Black participants.
- Lastly, another challenge was that even with all the sharing of the survey, I had no participants from Chinese background and only one from the "Any other asian" background. This was when my supervisor suggested I bring paper copies to places where I knew people from this racial background frequented. This led to 3 filled out surveys from Chinese individuals.