Home » Report: Texas calls diversity in hiring initiatives ‘illegal’ and ‘forbidden’

Report: Texas calls diversity in hiring initiatives ‘illegal’ and ‘forbidden’

by The Grio

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott has joined other Republican leaders in attempting to halt diversity, equity and inclusion initiatives, warning state agency and public university executives that implementing such policies is “illegal” in hiring and “forbidden.”

According to The Texas Tribune, Gardner Pate, Abbott’s chief of staff, informed agency executives that it was against both federal and state employment rules to employ DEI policies, noting that candidates should not be chosen based on anything besides merit.

Pate claimed that DEI initiatives, which benefit historically underrepresented or discriminated against groups, were illegally used to favor certain demographic groups over others. However, he did not name any specific groups.

“Rebranding this employment discrimination as ‘DEI’ doesn’t make the practice any less illegal,” Pate wrote in a memo, according to The Tribune. “Further, when a state agency spends taxpayer dollars to fund offices, departments, or employee positions dedicated to promoting forbidden DEI initiatives, such actions are also inconsistent with the law.”

President Lyndon B. Johnson used the 1964 Civil Rights Act to outlaw discrimination against people of color, particularly Black Americans, in higher-wage positions based on sex, race, religion and national origin.

Leaders created DEI policies to direct businesses, government agencies and universities to boost diversity and foster an environment that values the fair treatment of people who have historically faced discrimination in America. Resources for underrepresented groups, such as those with disabilities, LGBTQ people and veterans, may be included.

Pate’s memo cites federal and state anti-discrimination statutes to support his prohibition of DEI initiatives. These laws, in particular, were developed in response to decades of discrimination.

The governor’s decree is the most recent…

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