Affirmative Reaction

The U.S. Supreme Court is widely expected to ban or further roll back affirmative action at the end of its term in June, a decision that could prohibit any consideration of race in college admissions. The outcome could have effects well beyond campuses, as many employers use hiring practices in the workplace similar to college admissions – considering race as part of the goal of creating a more diverse culture.

In anticipation of the ruling, FGS Global developed guidance outlining how to assess the landscape ahead of the June decision and craft communications in preparation for the result.

Some key takeaways include:

  • Create a working group – Include representatives from communications, legal, HR and key stakeholder groups and, ideally, diverse voices representing potentially impacted communities.
  • Be thoughtful about your tone – Critics are attuned to corporate jargon, and stakeholders recognize when you’re just following the crowd.
  • Put actions behind your content – Speak from your established value, but communicating allyship without meaningful action will be criticized as performative.
  • Consider the right spokesperson – If you’re going to publicly comment, think carefully about who the best voice is to communicate your updates.
  • Listen closely, and be ready – While the ruling will reverberate over the long-run, expect to be asked questions the moment the decision arrives.

If you are interested in receiving the full memo, contact