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Federal commissioner fires back at Mark Cuban for diversity claim, delivers warning about DEI

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Andrea Lucas, a commissioner for the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, spoke to Fox News Digital about a viral tweet from Mark Cuban, saying it could open him up to a lawsuit and illustrates a misunderstanding about diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) programs.

Lucas explained that using race or sex as a factor in employment decisions violates Title VII, and quotas are a direct violation of the law.

She emphasized that equal employment opportunity is not the same as equal outcomes.

Lucas said, “Certainly there’s a lot of confusion over DEI programs and what you can and can’t do with respect to race or sex or other protected characteristics.”

Adding, “as long as you don’t use race or sex as the dispositive factor or the sole factor, it’s okay to use it as a plus factor.”

“That’s just fundamentally wrong,” she exclaimed.

Cuban posted, “I only ever hire the person that will put my business in the best position to succeed.”

He continued, “And yes, race and gender can be part of the equation. I view diversity as a competitive advantage.”

Lucas wrote, “If any employer, whether private or public, uses race or sex or any other protected characteristic, particularly race or sex, as any factor in their decision-making process for any employment decision then they’ve violated Title VII and an employee that’s been harmed can file a complaint with the EEOC and then if they get a right to sue letter, they can file in federal court.”

“A goal, per se is not prohibited, but there’s lots of ways that you can end up violating the law or having it be used as evidence of violating the law if it indicates that you’re using race or sex or another protected characteristic as a factor in your decision making. Quotas absolutely are a direct violation of Title VII, so if you are indicating that goal really is an actual requirement or a hard target, that you will be hiring this amount of people or you will be promoting this amount of people, that’s absolutely a facial violation of Title VII,” explained Lucas.

Lucas said, “So a lot of people hear the words diversity, equity and inclusion and think, well, all of those sound like great concepts.

“I like fairness. Who doesn’t like fairness? I like equality. What’s wrong with equity? But the reason that there’s been a shift from focusing on equal employment opportunity to equity is for a reason. Words mean something, and equity and equality are not the same concept,” she continued.

“I like to remind people, we are the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, we are not the equal outcomes commission. That is just a fundamentally different mission. There may be different outcomes at different points for different employees. That’s not mandated by the law for everyone to arrive at the exact same place. What matters is that employers are treating all of their employees the same without relying on their skin color or their sex or other protected characteristics,” added the commissioner.

Cuban later posted a conversation with an EEOC Vice-Chair, calling it an “interesting conversation,” but Lucas disagreed, stating that there is no such thing as reverse race discrimination and that using race or sex as a motivating factor is a violation of the law.

Lucas responded, “Smart people cannot disagree about some basic principles of law.”

“And those principles are, there’s no such thing as reverse race discrimination. There’s just discrimination. Discrimination based on race is always illegal. It doesn’t matter which group is being referenced. It doesn’t matter which group is doing the discriminating or being discriminated against,” she added.

She expressed deep concern about the recent DEI push potentially causing more problems than it solves.

Cuban later clarified that he never hires people based on skin color if two people have equal credentials.

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