Corporate DEI facing cutbacks; legal attacks

Adrienne Bresnahan
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Just three years after the murder of George Floyd in Minneapolis set off a torrent of hiring of chief diversity officers and other such roles, companies are coming under attack from conservative legal activists who argue that their DEI policies and programs constitute racial discrimination.

The challenges come as companies, faced with an uncertain economy, have already been laying off large numbers of people, including many only recently hired to implement their diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) strategies.

The one-two punch has legal experts split on what’s ahead for these efforts, while longtime diversity advocates argue that companies should take these setbacks as an opportunity to reset.

“We cannot place the reasoning for it on something as subjective as the right thing to do. It has to be the smart thing to do,” says Janet Stovall, global head of diversity, equity and inclusion for the NeuroLeadership Institute, a consulting firm focused on culture and leadership.


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Chuck comes from a lineage of journalism. He has written for some of the webs most popular news sites. He enjoys spending time outdoors, bull riding, and collecting old vinyl records. Roll Tide!