Ms. magazine  -- more than a magazine a movement

SIGN UP FOR MS. DIGEST, JOBS, NEWS AND ALERTS

FEMINIST WIRE NEWSBRIEFS

ABOUT
SEE CURRENT ISSUE
SHOP MS. STORE
MS. IN THE CLASSROOM
FEMINIST DAILY WIRE
FEMINIST RESOURCES
PRESS
JOBS AT MS.
READ BACK ISSUES
CONTACT
RSS (XML)
 
feminist wire | daily newsbriefs

December-01-00

California Supreme Court Decision a Blow to Affirmative Action

In a decision anticipated to affect many state and local outreach and recruitment programs aimed at increasing participation of women and minorities in public employment, education and contracting, the California Supreme Court struck down a program by the City of San Jose that required companies awarded contracts by the City to show they made an effort to recruit women and minority-owned businesses as sub-contractors. In its first ruling on Prop 209 – the highly contested initiative passed by California voters in 1996 – the court’s decision prohibits “targeted outreach programs” directed exclusively at women and minorities.

Although clearly a set-back for affirmative action proponents, legal analysts believe many local and state government outreach and recruitment programs will survive. For example, the City of Los Angeles requires outreach to “women and minority-owned firms and others.” Expected to become a model for other local governments, the Los Angeles program was cited along with several other outreach efforts as “permissible” by the state Supreme Court’s Chief Justice Ronald M. George in a concurring opinion. George emphasized the court’s ruling “does not prohibit all affirmative action programs or preclude governmental entities in this state from initiating proactive steps … to address the continuing effects of past discrimination or exclusion.”

Even as many local governments were dropping affirmative action programs in the wake of passage of Prop 209, the City of Los Angeles has expanded the percentage of all contracts awarded to minority owned businesses to “near-record highs” according to the Los Angeles Times. Minority owned firms won 13.5% of city contracts, or $1.1 billion, in the past year after dropping sharply following passage of Prop 209. The contracts awarded to women entrepreneurs doubled to 10%, up from 4.5% (the first year data on women was collected).

The Feminist Majority Foundation led a large coalition of women’s and civil rights groups in the statewide Campaign to Stop Prop 209, which passed by a 54 – 46% margin, far below the initiative’s massive lead of 78 – 16% in the polls when the campaign began one year earlier.

Media Resources: Feminist Majority Foundation and Los Angeles Times - December 1, 2000


© Feminist Majority Foundation, publisher of Ms. magazine

If you liked this story, consider making a tax-deductible donation to support Ms. magazine.

 

 

Send to a Friend
Their
Your
Comments
(optional)


More Feminist News

12/24/2014 New FMF Study Finds Nationwide Increase in Public Single-Sex K-12 Education Despite Evidence it Increases Sex Stereotyping and Sex Discrimination - Deliberate sex segregation is on the rise in public K-12 classrooms across the country, despite evidence that it is often illegal and educationally unsound. Tuesday, the Feminist Majority Foundation's Education Equity Program released a second multi-year study "Identifying US K-12 Public Schools with Deliberate Sex Segregation." According to the new study, there has been a 24 percent increase in public coed schools with single-sex academic classes since the period covering 2007-2010. . . .
 
12/23/2014 Boko Haram Kidnapped 172 More Women and Children, Officials Report - According to local officials and residents, Boko Haram insurgents kidnapped at least 172 women and children and killed 35 people last week. "They gathered the women and children and took them away in trucks after burning most of the village with petrol bombs," a local government official reported anonymously. Reports of the attack in northeastern Nigeria took days to become public news due to a lack of communication - it has been known that telecommunications towers in the area were disabled in previous attacks. . . .
 
12/23/2014 Fate of 15-Foot Buffer Zone On Hold in Pittsburgh - The fate of a 15-foot buffer zone in Pittsburgh could be determined by a federal judge if city lawyers and anti-abortion protesters don't come to an agreement first. Earlier this month, US District Judge Cathy Bissoon heard oral arguments from attorneys representing the city of Pittsburgh and attorneys representing five anti-abortion protesters who demanded an injunction against a city ordinance that they say is selectively enforced and meant to censor them. The Alliance Defending Freedom, the religious advocacy group representing the anti-abortion protesters, argued that their clients' ability to offer, self-described "sidewalk counseling" as women enter the local Planned Parenthood is inhibited by the 2005 ordinance. . . .