© 2013 John Wiley & Sons Ltd. Aim: This study aims to explore experiences of racism, discrimination and equality of opportunity among black African nurses and their managers' perspective on these issues. Background: International nurse migration has brought increased diversity in the nursing workforce internationally. These nurses have reported negative experiences associated with their integration in host nations. The UK has a long history of international nurse recruitment, which has been associated with experiences of racism and discrimination towards these nurses despite various equality Acts. Experiences of black African nurses and perceptions of their managers are good indicators of how effective these equality Acts have been. Method: A qualitative approach was used to gain an insight into black nurses' experiences and those of their managers in the UK National Health Service. Findings: Nurses and managers reported that black African nurses face racism, discrimination and lack of equal opportunities in the British National Health Service. Conclusion: Racism and discrimination towards black and ethnic minority nurses are present in the National Health Service despite equality Acts. Robust measures to combat racism and discrimination are urgently needed. Implications for nursing management: Managers need to be aware that good policies can be misinterpreted and disadvantage minorities, and should therefore take steps to promote good practice.