Stephen Miller, once a senior advisor to the President of the United States, albeit in a dark moment when that president was Donald Trump, has moved on to using the legal activist group he founded to punish candy makers for diverse hiring practices.
Miller’s America First Legal argues that Mars, Inc, the makers of M&Ms, is being unfair by implementing hiring practices intended to create a workforce that is diverse and representative of the labor market, by expanding their benefits packages to recognize domestic partners, covering transgender health needs, and participating in PRIDE events.
In addition, the organization complains that 41% of Mars’ leadership is women (approximately half the human population is female), and that the company partners with a program that provides scholarships to BIPOC.
All of this, and more, are described in the complaint as illegal discrimination, and Mars’ explanation of algorithms intended to remove bias in hiring is dismissed as false, because the shifts in hiring demographics indicate (according to the complaint) “discrimination based on race, color, national origin, or sex.”
Miller’s organization appears to think that intentional discrimination is more likely than the idea that simply removing bias from hiring results in fairer, more diverse hiring practices — not a surprising view from a man whose white supremacist stances were visible in his involvement in immigration and other policy matters during the Trump Administration. From Rolling Stone:
“[I]t comes as part of a broader assault on diversity and inclusion efforts as the conservative movement’s latest craze has focused on “woke capitalism,” defined as a form of market conservatism that fails to toe the line on right wing culture war fundamentalism. And the Mars complaint is only the latest legal crusades against diversity in the corporate world, by America First Legal, which describes itself as “determined to stop the destructive hiring practices of woke companies across the country.””
Because of these policies that seek to offer equal opportunities across gender, ethnic background, and other demographics, America First Legal is asking the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) to investigate what it calls “systemic and discriminatory hiring, promotion, and job-training employment practices” — apparently reinterpreted to mean that it’s not fair if a company isn’t predominantly hiring white cishet men.