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AMAC Mobilizes As Diversity Programs Come Under Scrutiny

The Airport Minority Advisory Council is mobilizing in the wake of the U.S. Supreme Court’s 6-3 decision to strike down affirmative action in college admissions. While the decision is limited to higher education, analysts are predicting the decision could have repercussions in the workplace.

AMAC this week said it will “activate our members, chapters and industry partners to champion and defend programs that allow for equitable and expanded opportunities for minorities and women in the aviation industry.”

The action appears to be warranted. Attorney analysis from Westlaw Today, a part of Thomson Reuters, said that “employers should contemplate how this decision may impact their diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) initiatives and environmental, social, and governance (ESG) commitments.”

“While employer initiatives are subject to a different legal framework than the educational admissions programs challenged in these cases, we expect that the Court’s decision may have broad-reaching implications across various civil rights laws, including those that impact workplace DEI efforts,” the analysis said.

In a statement, AMAC President and CEO Eboni Wimbush said “AMAC will relentlessly pursue our mission of advancing the full participation of minorities and women in employment and contracting opportunities throughout the aviation and aerospace industries to achieve our vision of economic equity, access and wealth for minorities and women in the aviation and aerospace industries.”

AMAC said there is “no doubt” that the recent ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court to strike down affirmative action in education will have trickle-down impacts on business supplier diversity and workplace DEI programs. The trade group pointed to warning signs, such as the letter undersigned by attorneys general of 13 states threatening Fortune 100 CEOs with ‘serious legal consequences’ for the continuation of race-based preference for their employment, contracting and supplier diversity practices, and the U.S. House of Representatives’ so-far-unsuccessful attempts to remove funding for diversity and inclusion programs at the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) through amendments to the FAA Reauthorization Bill.

“The attempt to dismantle workplace and business diversity programs is underway, and the fight is at our door,” AMAC said.