What Is Reverse Discrimination and Is It Legal in Texas?

The United States has a long history of discrimination against various groups, including racial minorities and women. And it should come as no surprise that the most desirable jobs are filled by those who have been given the best opportunities to succeed by not having the road-block of discrimination erected in their path. This often means that certain minority groups, as well as women, are poorly represented across certain industries.This fact has led some private and public-sector employees to engage in what is known as “reverse discrimination.” Essentially, reverse discrimination is exhibiting the preference of a minority candidate over a candidate of a majority group.

Discrimination is often used in the context of adverse action being taken against a person in a minority group. However, that is not necessarily always the case. When an employer exhibits a preference for one group over another based on an immutable characteristic such as race, they are engaging in a form of discrimination. However, the Texas Labor Code and Civil Rights Act of 1964 apply to all citizens equally, regardless of whether they belong to a majority or minority group.

The fact of the matter is that employers should refrain from basing an employment decision off of a person’s race, color, gender, national origin, religion, age, or disability. In doing so, they are engaging in discrimination.

The question often arises: if this is the case, then how is affirmative action legal? The term “affirmative action,” which has become increasingly popular over the past few decades, is seen by many as a permitted form of reverse discrimination, albeit only in very limited situations. Namely, affirmative action generally crops up in the context of secondary-education.

The Supreme Court determined that colleges and universities have a “compelling interest” in maintaining a diverse student body. However, courts have rejected similar arguments by employers arguing in favor of affirmative action in the workplace in hopes of obtaining a diverse workforce.

The bottom line is that employers cannot make decisions based on a potential employee’s membership in a protected class. If they do, they are engaging in illegal discrimination.

Have You Been the Victim of Workplace Discrimination?

If you have recently been passed over for a job, demoted, transferred to a less desirable position, or terminated based on a discriminatory reason, you should contact the dedicated lawyers at Rob Wiley, P.C. We represent workers in all types of employment disputes, including discrimination claims. To learn more, call 214-528-6500 to schedule a free consultation with an attorney to discuss your case and what options you have to proceed.

More Blog Posts:

The Intersection Between Title VII and the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission’s Rules Regarding Accent Discrimination, Dallas Employment Lawyer Blog, July 6, 2018.

ADA Guidelines Regarding Disclosing Disabilities During Interviews, Dallas Employment Lawyer Blog, June 29, 2018.

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