Affirmative action is a set of practices and policies that a government or an institution implements to increase a certain group’s representation. The main goal is to bridge the existing inequalities in access to education, employment, redressing historical injustices, and promoting diversity (Leiter & Leiter, 2011). The main types of affirmative action include race-based, class-based, and geography-based affirmative actions.
Race-based affirmative actions are a set of practices and policies that a government or an institution puts in place to increase a certain race’s representation. Race-based affirmative action needs proper planning and implementation to avoid racial discrimination (Leiter & Leiter, 2011). Although race-based affirmative action aims to increase minority race representation, it should not hinder other races’ fair representation. An example is the Obama-era policy of admission in schools that promoted racial diversity.
Class-based affirmative action policies are the set of policies that increase the economically disadvantaged group’s representation. Class-based affirmative actions aim to increase diversity by improving the lower-income population’s opportunities. It also allows a balanced economic development of society with the high and low-class areas accessing development (Leiter & Leiter, 2011). Class-based affirmative action does not allow the creation of rivalry or tension between the classes but aims to achieve all classes’ inclusion. The current class-based affirmative action program in higher education helps integrate all classes in the higher education system.
Geography-based affirmative action is a practice that increases a particular geographical area’s representation. The policy ensures that all geographical borders are represented in the program (Leiter & Leiter, 2011). For instance, to implement geographical representation in admissions, most schools offer more scholarships to certain continents to attract more students from the underrepresented regions. Geography-based affirmative action does not allow geographical boundaries of history to influence a certain area’s representation. Affirmative action aims to break the geographical gaps in fair representation.
The main types of affirmative action are race-based, class-based, and geography-based affirmative actions. Institutions and governments implement affirmative actions to ensure diversity in representation. Affirmative action implementers need careful planning to ensure that discrimination does not arise instead of diversity.
References Leiter, M. W., & Leiter, S. (2011). Affirmative action in antidiscrimination law and policy: An overview and synthesis. New York, NY: SUNY Press.