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Effect of Proposal 2 on U-M as an Employer

MEMO TO: Deans, Directors, and Department Heads

FROM: Laurita Thomas Associate Vice President for Human Resources

SUBJECT: Effect of Proposal 2 on U-M as an Employer

In the wake of last week's vote on Proposal 2, I want to provide some important clarifications concerning the effect of the proposal on U-M as an employer.

As President Coleman stated in her remarks to the community last Wednesday, "The University of Michigan embraces, promotes, wants, and believes in diversity." The passage of Proposal 2 does not change our commitment, nor does it alter our employment practices or the protections and requirements of various federal and state laws including the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Title IX of the Education Amendments, the Americans with Disabilities Act, and Michigan's Elliott-Larsen Civil Rights Act, which prohibits a wide array of discrimination extending far beyond issues of race and gender.

We must continue to work diligently to recruit and retain the best faculty and staff by creating a community that seeks, welcomes and defends diversity. We will do so in compliance with state and federal laws, and federal law requires that we continue to take affirmative steps (known as affirmative action) in our employment process in order to adhere to the equal employment opportunity and affirmative action provisions of Executive Order 11246 regarding race, gender, color, religion and national origin required of all federal contractors. Proposal 2 specifically states that it does not prohibit actions that are required to establish or maintain eligibility for any federal program, if ineligibility would result in a loss of federal funds to the state.


  • The University's nondiscrimination policy remains in full force and effect (see SPG 201.35

  • A host of federal and state civil rights laws, including those discussed above, continue to be in effect and applicable to the University.

  • The University must continue to adhere to all the requirements of Executive Order 11246.

  • As it relates to the employment process, Executive Order 11246 requires all federal contractors, such as U-M, to take affirmative steps to ensure its employment process is fair and equitable and offers equal opportunity in hiring and employment. The types of affirmative steps required include a focus on recruiting and outreach, such as casting the widest net possible when conducting an employment search.

  • EO 11246 also requires that federal contractors not discriminate against job applicants or employees.

  • The University's standard statement in employment ads, "A Non-Discriminatory/Affirmative Action Employer" or similar language such as "Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Employer" is required by EO 11246 and must continue to be used.

Although questions remain about the full impact of the proposal as well as its applicability to higher education, we remain vigorously committed to the advancement of equal opportunities for all.

If you have questions regarding the University's nondiscrimination statement, diversity, or affirmative action, please contact the Office of Institutional Equity