The Issue of Diversity

The Federal Bureau of Investigation has predominately consisted of white men. While the rest of the world has diversified its workforce and made long strides for equality, the FBI still seems to be behind. The main reason for the lack of diversity within the Bureau is stereotypes. Being that the FBI is primarily concerned with national security, hiring people with a foreign heritage is rare. Moreso, while other sectors of employment throughout The United States have continued to experience an increase in diversity, the FBI has actually become worse. Due to the political climate that we are in now and as a reaction to the ideas that Donald Trump has pushed throughout his presidency, the FBI has become increasingly more “white” throughout recent years. The situation has gone so far as to be called a crisis by the former FBI director James Comey (“Pacific”). In a speech at Cookman University Comey said “slowly but steadily over the last decade or more, the percentage of special agents in the FBI who are white has been growing. I’ve got nothing against white people- especially tall, awkward, male white people- but that is a crisis for reasons that you get, and that I’ve worked very hard to make sure the entire FBI understands” (“Pacific”).

 

Legal Action:

In the 1990s, a group of black agents sued the FBI for discrimination within the bureau. During this time about 1 in 20 agents was black and this group of black agents claimed that there was “systemic discrimination by the bureau in the quality of assignments, performance reviews, rates of promotions, and overall workplace culture” (Pacific). In 1993 a federal judge concluded that there “was statistical evidence of discrimination at the FBI, and a settlement was reached” (Pacific). While a promise was made to diversify the bureau, the FBI is hesitant in releasing full statistics over the demographics of the people they hire. Moreso, the few numbers that have been released to the public indicate that this problem has only worsened.

 

 

Further Reading:

 

Works Cited

Sanders, Topher. “The FBI Has a Serious Diversity Problem.” Pacific Standard, Pacific Standard, 20 Mar. 2018, psmag.com/social-justice/the-fbi-has-an-ongoing-diversity-problem.

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