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Free «The Policies of Affirmative Action» Essay Sample

Introduction

The fight to create a better society for all social groups in America was brought about by the policies of affirmative action pushed over by the majority of civil rights movement. The policies took into greater consideration gender, ethnicity and races to bring about equality. One key player in the policy, President John F.Kennedy ensured that applicants had equal access to job opportunities and that they were subjected to equal treatment during the employment process with no regard to color, race and origin. This was mandated in his Executive Order 10925. More years later, President Lyndon B.Johnson and many others put more emphasis on the need for affirmative action in order to achieve freedom and equality for all.  The policies focused mainly on employment, health programs and general public goals. These were perceived, would create a uniform representation among the Americans, therefore eliminating discrimination and to address perceived disadvantages especially to those who were the minority.

 The civil right movement groups argued that affirmative action was the best tool to promote or bring an equal level to opportunities as well as creating other forms of diversifications (Doverspike et. Al., 2000). Several groups who were perceived as the disadvantaged in America are currently benefiting from the affirmative action policies. This included majorly African-Americans who historically had no access to job opportunities, education chances and lifestyles based on laws that segregated them. Affirmative action refers to a set of initiatives and policies which were developed in America so as to get rid of discrimination which is based on race, religion, color, national origin or sex.

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Working opportunities/ employment

The Office of the Commissioner of Insurance recognizes the need to take affirmative action into consideration as this would do away with discrimination and serve the American population as a whole, equally. This has made positive impacts on various grounds which includes the working opportunities. It is entrusted with ensuring equal working opportunities to all the people. This is regardless of age, race, color, nation of origin or gender. This guarantees that everybody is able to work in an environment where there is no discrimination and harassment as required by the laws. Harassment in this case may include unwelcome sexual advances, or verbal and physical in nature.  It therefore takes into great consideration the interests of the employees as well as the clients at hand. This ensures the integrity of the working relationship is maintained. Productivity of the workforce is therefore not interfered with.

The Office of the Commissioner of Insurance also ensures that equal work opportunities applies to all the employment practices which includes recruitment ,interviewing, promotions and hiring. For persons with disabilities, The Office of the Commissioner of Insurance ensures that they are guaranteed all benefits associated with the work. They do this by making the work place accessible or adopting other work patterns appropriate to the victims of disabilities. The Office of the Commissioner of Insurance therefore recognizes the fact that opportunity for all is a legal necessity towards increasing productivity. Employees are therefore able to share responsibility towards the achievement of goals as per the policies supporting the elimination of discrimination.

Equal voting rights

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During the colonial era in America, the concepts of age, gender, religion and wealth played a crucial role giving restrictions on whom to vote. And so racial differences were not the means employed in as may be thought. This limited the number of individuals who were eligible to vote as compared to the entire population. Among those who were eligible to vote were adult African American property owners’ who were only restricted to voting in particular states and not others. A few colonies later on in the 18th century restricted the right to vote based on races where as in other colonies there were no such limitations. There was no clear definition of the right to vote. It’s only until, 1786, that two of the thirteen states, Georgia and South Carolina , that voting was restricted to the eligible population of the whites. In1787, the constitution recognized and defined the right to vote and between 1776 and 1860, almost one-third of the states was permitted voting rights to the African American Adults. Various activists like Fredrick Douglass pushed for reforms advocating for numerous changes. Amendments were made on the constitution and African Americans were recognized as citizens. They were now guaranteed equal protection as per the law and eligible male voters could vote. Amendments brought out in the 1870 stopped states from denying anyone the right to vote by considering one’s race or color. These supported wide changes in American voting rights. By 1868, over 800,000 African Americans and about 660,000 white voters were registered as voters (Beckwith and Jones, 1997). They can now exercise their rights to vote as well as take part in political party conventions as elected state and government officials.

Equal rights to vote came in 1962 when the court had a ruling over the unequal representation. This was felt to have violated against equal protection. The ruling was later extended two years after whereby a one man one vote rule came about. This now provides for equal rights to voting, making the past amendments redundant. The constitutiomnal amendments therefore provided a means through which everybody is guaranteed the right to voting for all. The Supreme Court however had the opinion and always stated that voting was a fundamental right of every American.

Equal chance to education

 
 
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American’s belief in education was that it can transform the life of its people hence impacting on the growth and development of its economy as well as the political wellbeing .The civil rights movements’ affirmative action concept is working well to fulfill the promises of providing all the people of America with equal chances when it comes to education. These were all brought about by the U.S. Commission on Civil rights which declared that where education is provided, it is provided equally to all (Beckwith and Jones, 1997). This focus has promoted chances in education as well as ensuring the affirmative action policies are preserved. The commission is demonstrating its commitment to eliminating discrimination. It is further ensuring a well represented enrolment to institutions considering gender and the status of the minority. Aware of the roles of institutions of higher learning in creating social harmony and national goals, the U.S.Commission has managed to diversify the students’ body with diverse cultures and even citizenry. This was achieved through the use of affirmative action in getting the minority students using scholarships that targeted them. This was meant to achieve important national interests of doing away with discrimination as well as maintaining a diverse student’s body. The affirmative action policies is also beneficial has it has forced a number of institutions of learning to change their admissions and aid programs so that they are able to apply to, the affirmative action policies. This has led some states to ban race-related admissions which only guarantee admission to a set  students. With the implementation of the affirmative action, there came a change in representation of minorities in schools both in graduate and professional schools. For example African Americans and Hispanics had been a problem when it came to higher education. This has led to an effort an effort to change this through admission policies.        

Promoting diversity in Americans’ institutions of learning has actually been the main interest in which everybody has a stake. The U.S Commission has therefore achieved diversity within the institutions which is essential for America’s social, economicand educational progress. With this there are a growing percentage number of its people ones regarded minority making up its population. The nation can therefore not afford to ignore the admission programmes involving minority students to pursue their education hence educating students in diverse environments. Affirmative action in admission of students as therefore acted as an effective tool towards the achievement of equal opportunities as well as promoting and attaining diversity. The American Supreme Court now ensures that all children have an opportunity to a diverse learning environment. It has even been of great significant in the last half century in promoting decisions promoting racial equality. It can now affirm its longstanding to guide the policies of the affirmative action. 

Limiting racism

As late as 1970’s majority blacks, Hispanic and female jobseekers still had no chance as compared to their white colleagues in America. Racism has therefore been a major issue since the colonial era. The country has majorly been dominated by whites with the burden of racism falling mainly upon the Native Americans, Africans, Asians, Mexicans and some other immigrants and their descendants. It occurred in areas such as employment, housing, education and government. Efforts were therefore being made to avert this kind of discrimination .Racial discrimination was therefore largely banned in the middle of the 20th century when it was declared impermissible. Bills aimed at providing equal opportunities were introduced to the minorities. This led to the beginning of processes of rules and mandates that evolve into affirmative action believed as a means of leveling up the field. No one in America is therefore denied an opportunity to meet their set goals and reach their dreams.

Affirmative action has actually worked and minorities are currently sharing their rightful places as equal as the whites. Slowly and steadily, everything is changing and the racial barriers are even being torn more and more. The idea is enabling people of different ethnicity and sex to access equal opportunities as far as education and employment are concerned hence setting a level ground. This has reduced cases where people compete for opportunities based on various discriminative ideologies.

Conclusion

Affirmative action has benefited a wide range of people and communities living in America since its inception. This is most especially to those who were facing discrimination. The policies set a level ground thus promoting equality by directing resources and other opportunities to communities that were not well represented. These include women, native Americans, Arab Americans and African Americans. These have now opened up American institutions to diversified community representations. Everybody is now opened to equal opportunities and a fair chance in service delivery.

   

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