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Affirmative action was implemented with the idea and hope that North America would finally become truly equal.

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Introduction

As we all know, affirmative action was implemented with the idea and hope that North America would finally become truly equal. Originating within the National Labour Relations Act of 1935, it was originally put in place to prohibit private employers from discriminating against persons because of membership in labour unions.1 Affirmative action was envisioned as a temporary remedy that would end once there was a "level playing field" for North America. So far, it has lasted for thirty years without solving any of our current problems concerning equal rights, it is making things worse. More apparent than ever, affirmative action hinders women in the workplace and produces a stressful working environment. It creates isolation, segregation and separation. Unmistakably there are pros and cons within this unfinished issue; however, written statistics, economic facts and real life instances display the drawbacks created within our continent. To get a better understanding of this forever debating issue, we must first understand the definition of affirmative action and its distinctive components. Defining Affirmative Action can be done in many ways. The general definition of this program is: affirmative action exists whenever an organization goes out of its way (i.e. exerts effort) ...read more.

Middle

This creates division within the place of work which results in the separation of sexes and a tense workplace with many debates. This then equals less work being done. An additional issue with the rules that accompany affirmative action are whether the women will react positively or negatively. Companies can make all these procedures and practices to adhere to a woman's needs, but it doesn't guarantee the women will be available or willing to work. Women also face and issue concerning expanding opportunities as well and one question is brought up time and time again: What justifies providing opportunities for women where none exist for men?7 This question, for many reasons, is more relevant to the issue of sexual gender rather than race. Reasons including the fact that women are part of such a large group and do not qualify being a minority by any means. This also creates the argument on why women get special treatment at all. When on March 25, 1987, the Supreme Court ruled in order to correct an imbalance of job categories exclusively for women8, they hurt more then they helped the discriminated gender. From a women's perspective, affirmative action programs are both insulting and offensive. ...read more.

Conclusion

at 11. 3 R.F. Tomasson et al., Affirmative Action: The Pros and Cons of Policy and Practice (United States of America: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, 2001) at 12. 4 R.F. Tomasson et al., Affirmative Action: The Pros and Cons of Policy and Practice (United States of America: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, 2001) at 136. 5 R.F. Tomasson et al., Affirmative Action: The Pros and Cons of Policy and Practice (United States of America: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, 2001) at 139. 6 R. Tucker. Affirmative Action, The Supreme Court, and Political Power in the Old Confederacy. (Maryland: University Press of America, 2000) at 20. 7 N. Mills, ed., Debating Affirmative Action: Race Gender, Ethnicity, and the Politics of Inclusion. (New York: Nicolaus Mills, 1994) at 77. 8 N. Mills, ed., Debating Affirmative Action: Race Gender, Ethnicity, and the Politics of Inclusion. (New York: Nicolaus Mills, 1994) at 68. 9 N. Mills, ed., Debating Affirmative Action: Race Gender, Ethnicity, and the Politics of Inclusion. (New York: Nicolaus Mills, 1994) at 69. 10 N. Mills, ed., Debating Affirmative Action: Race Gender, Ethnicity, and the Politics of Inclusion. (New York: Nicolaus Mills, 1994) at 75. 11 N. Mills, ed., Debating Affirmative Action: Race Gender, Ethnicity, and the Politics of Inclusion. (New York: Nicolaus Mills, 1994) at 75. 8 ...read more.

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