Equal Opertunity Employment

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Equal Opportunity Employment

Introduction Prior to 1964 there was very little in the way of regulations as to how employers could hire individuals. It was left up to them. They could simply decide to hire you or not for any reason they chose, and there was nothing you could do about it. Most would consider this a normal practice and would think nothing of it, and chalk to up to the fact that they just weren’t right for the job. Where certain individuals thought nothing of it, others noticed a pattern that they would not stand for. With that the Federal Government decided that something needed to be done to level the playing field. (Kohl, 1985)

What is Equal Opportunity Employment
The concept of equal opportunity employment was created by Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. It was the first federal law designed to protect employees from discrimination based upon five protected classes that include the employee's race, color, religion, sex, and national origin. Over the years through various acts the five protected classes were expanded to also include age, disabilities, and veteran’s status. With Title VII came the creation of an organization to oversee the program and ensure compliance with it. That organization is known as the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.
The term most people are familiar with when it comes to equal opportunity is affirmative action. Along with title VII came an executive order which mandated that federal contractors could not discriminate against employees based upon the same reasoning as stated above; however it went a step further by requiring the implementation of plans to increase the minority workforce. It was determined that there were not enough minorities in the workforce due to discrimination. Affirmative action aimed at reducing this problem. It required that an analysis of the current work force…...

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