Wednesday, August 26, 2020
Subsequent Monday will mark the top of the California legislature’s present session, that means that any invoice not handed by that date will die. Usually, the previous few days of a legislative session are chaotic with many payments being amended on the eleventh hour.
I’ve beforehand written about AB 979 (Holden) which might require publicly held home and international firms with their principal government workplaces in California to have minimal numbers of administrators from “underrepresented communities”. AB 979 is patterned after SB 826 which imposes feminine director quotas. See California Enacts Novel Feminine Board Quota Laws.
AB 979 was amended final Thursday to develop the definition of “director from an underrepresented group” to incorporate a person who self-identifies as “as homosexual, lesbian, bisexual, or transgender”.
The invoice additionally included some extra legislative findings with respect to present racial and ethnic group illustration on public firm boards. This may increasingly have been in response to my testimony earlier than the Senate Banking and Monetary Establishments Committee through which I identified that the legislative findings within the invoice didn’t relate to director illustration. The amendments didn’t handle my different feedback, together with the truth that the invoice will discriminate towards males board candidates who’re from underrepresented communities. Oddly, the invoice will now additionally discriminate in favor of transgender females and towards transgender males. It could additionally privilege transgender females over people self figuring out solely as feminine as a result of transgender females would apparently qualify as “feminine” below SB 826 and as being from an underrepresented group below AB 979. It’s unknown if this was meant and, if that’s the case, why.
One other apparent downside is that it depends on self-identification. Does this imply that identification could also be wholly-subjective? Might an individual with no factual foundation merely self-identify as being from an underrepresented group? Might Rachel Dolezal, for instance, self-identify as Black?
The invoice’s classes, furthermore, are imprecise and ambiguous. For instance, might former California Supreme Courtroom Justice Marvin Baxter self-identify as Asian primarily based on his Armenian ancestry? Might former U.S. Supreme Courtroom Justice Benjamin Cardozo have self-identify as Hispanic primarily based on his standing as a Sephardic Jew? Justice Cardozo was a member of Shearith Israel, the Spanish and Portuguese Synagogue in New York. Shearith Israel, which was based in 1654, was the primary Jewish congregation to be established in North America.
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