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Inclusion Riders And Diversity Mandates, Emily Gold Waldman Jan 2019

Inclusion Riders And Diversity Mandates, Emily Gold Waldman

Elisabeth Haub School of Law Faculty Publications

In this piece, I situate these sorts of diversity requests within the broader context of other customer/client preferences that implicate Title VII. To be sure, the “inclusion riders” are not literal customer/client requests, but rather requests from celebrities who are themselves being hired by the employer for a specific project. Broadly speaking, however, they raise the same legal issue regarding third-party preferences that implicate protected characteristics under Title VII.

As a starting point, the general rule within employment discrimination law is that customer preferences cannot justify discriminatory treatment by employers. That baseline has led courts to rule that employers cannot, …