Affirmative Action

(redirected from Preferential Hiring)
Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Medical, Legal, Encyclopedia.

Affirmative Action

A series of policies a government or organization pursues to help a given demographic group, especially a historical minority, in work and/or education. Affirmative action may be mild; for example, race may be one of a number of factors a university considers when deciding admission. On the other hand, it may impose stringent requirements; for example, a government may oblige companies to abide by gender quotas when hiring.

Affirmative action as a policy is quite controversial. Proponents argue it helps engender equality among groups in society. Critics contend it does (or at least can) reward less qualified persons at the expense of more qualified persons.

The term "affirmative action" is predominantly American. The concept is called positive discrimination in the United Kingdom, employment equity in Canada and reservation in India.
References in periodicals archive ?
The preferential hiring policy defines three categories of individuals within each of the two racial groups, which I will call "marginals," "successes," and "failures." Marginals are those whose hiring status is altered by the policy--either whites not hired who otherwise would have been, or blacks hired who otherwise would not have been.
There was a significant difference between the topic of Question 1 (Quotas) and the topic of Question 2 (Preferential Hiring and Promotion) which may account for the different significance levels obtained for each.
The right is now portraying this strategic withdrawal as yet another cowardly attempt to avoid debating preferential hiring: "With defeat looming, affirmative action supporters have decided on a new weapon: the gag," railed James Glassman of the American Enterprise Institute.
The second part notes that senior professors, especially those in the discipline of philosophy, are aware that extra burdens have been placed on young male scholars by programs of preferential hiring. The third part then presents argument that the senior male professorate has both a general obligation, as societal members, to retire early and a special obligation, as senior male professors, to retire early.
Under the definition of equal employment opportunity, the categories of "passive nondiscrimination" and "pure affirmative action" are situated; under the definition of affirmative action are found the remaining three categories of "preferential hiring," "flexible goals and timetables," and "hard quotas and firm time-tables." These last three categories are in the process of being phased out through judicial restrictions, executive branch modifications, and legislative action.
Companies such as IBM, Xerox, American Express, Walt Disney, KFC, and Price Waterhouse have established aggressive preferential hiring systems for minorities.
Provisions established preferential hiring lists with private employers who take over State government operations, instituted hiring freezes to create openings for laid-off employees or those targeted for layoff, continued State-paid health care coverage for a limited transition period, and provided training for laid-off employees to enable them to qualify for job openings.
The BSA rank of Eagle, and participation in Explorer Scouting, is rewarded by public and private employers through promotions or preferential hiring. Completing an Eagle, with its numerous (albeit superficial) achievements, is highly regarded.
Although this decision was criticized as being contrary to the plain language of Title VII,(13) it formed the basis for the adoption, and judicial approval, of preferential hiring and promotional programs.
Again and again, the Challenge and Promise writers affirm that the Catholic university must create a majority, or at least a critical mass, of believers and give preferential hiring to Catholics or non-Catholics who are explicitly committed to promoting the university's Catholic identity.
Northeastern University, for example, is giving preferential hiring to openly gay faculty, who can "serve as role models" for homosexual students!
She says that store employees will get preferential hiring, but corporate-level Medicare-Glaser employees will not be interviewed.

Full browser ?