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Affirmative Action

Affirmative action is a system of correction and compensation that is essential for the creation of workplace diversity. Affirmative action attempts to correct the social problem of unequal employment opportunities for minorities and women. The method of correction depends upon whether a weak version of affirmative action is used or a strong version (Pojman, 1995, p. 341). Weak affirmative action seeks to level the playing field by providing scholarships to women and minorities, using community outreach to advertise certain employment positions, or using race or gender as a "tiebreaker" in the selection of equally qualified candidates. Strong affirmative action is often termed reverse discrimination because it gives an outright advantage to women and minorities in rectifying their under-representation in the workplace. The goal of affirmative action is workplace diversity. Diversity implies a fully integrated employment setting.

If administered properly, affirmative action can benefit the entire corporate workforce, not just minorities and women. A diversified workforce is better able to serve the needs of consumers in a global economy. Better service translates into corporate growth and increased employment opportunities for all. Therefore, using utilitarian rule theory, giving a slight advantage to women and minorities results in the greater good. Equal opportunity policies have failed in many corporate settings because managers are unable to move beyond affirmative action and onward to managing diversity.

Although the achievements of affirmative action in the past thirty years have been impressive, the underlying premises on which it was based have changed significantly (Thomas, Jr., 1995, p. 363). For instance, white native-born males do not comprise the majority of the business mainstream. Half of the American workforce consists of females, minorities, and immigrants. The recent recession and the advent of the...

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Affirmative Action. (1969, December 31). In Retrieved 12:20, August 06, 2020, from