published : 2023-08-25

Prominent Publication Company Slapped with Discrimination Lawsuit Amidst Diversity Push

Gannett, pledged in 2020 to diversify its workforce to reflect the communities it serves, now faces allegations of racial bias.

A candid shot of Gannett Headquarter's edifice glowing under twilight, illustrating the crux of the story. Taken with Nikon D780.

In an unfolding narrative that is drawing attention in the headline news, major newspaper publisher Gannett is currently facing a lawsuit, filed last Friday, alleging the company has perpetuated racial discrimination against White employees.

The allegations brought forward are set upon the premise that Gannett's efforts to increase diversity amongst its workforce, known as the 'Reverse Race Discrimination Policy,' were done with alleged flagrant disregard towards civil rights laws, resulting in the termination of numerous adequately qualified employees based purely on their non-minority status.

Among the accusations lies the story of former employee Steve Bradley who, despite his qualifications, was reportedly overlooked for a position within a Gannett-owned publication, allegedly given instead to a less qualified Black female who had reportedly not expressed prior interest in the role.

It's a race-centered controversy drawing discomforting parallels with the recent Supreme Court case that ruled out race as a determining factor in college admissions, citing that the eradication of racial discrimination requires eliminating all forms of it.

A capture of a white male professional tactfully surrounded by predominantly diverse corporate environment, embodying the ambiguity of the suit's racial bias allegations. Taken with Canon EOS R5.

While college admission policies are a world away from the corporate hiring practices Gannett is mired in, it paints a broader picture of the nation's grappling with how best to conduct affirmative action.

This is an assertion that underscores the balancing act between promoting diversity and maintaining equal opportunities, an issue that has sparked considerable national discourse.

With the policy set to continue until 2025, the lawsuit potentially threatens to unravel these efforts, demanding an immediate end to the 'Reverse Race Discrimination Policy'.

Increasing scrutiny comes just when the Gannett organization, the owner of USA Today and other newspapers, is also reducing opinion pages to combat perceived bias.

An image of Supreme Court building bathed in the setting sun's warm hues, subtly representing the looming legal complexities. Taken with Sony Alpha a7R IV.

However, Gannett's Chief Legal Counsel Polly Grunfeld Sack, firmly refutes the allegations in the lawsuit.

She states, 'We always seek to recruit and retain the most qualified individuals for all roles within the company. We will vigorously defend our practice of ensuring equal opportunities for all our valued employees against this meritless lawsuit.'

The unfolding battle between the news giant Gannett and the discrimination lawsuit is indicative of the larger, societal grappling with fairness, diversity, and what it means for a workforce to truly reflect the community it serves.