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Definition of "affirmative action" [affirmative action]

  • A policy or a program that seeks to redress past discrimination through active measures to ensure equal opportunity, as in education and employment. (noun)

American Heritage(R) Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright (c) 2011 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Use "affirmative action" in a sentence
  • "Political rightsMany of the landmark decisions about affirmative action in higher education are based on such issues as the value of diversity in the classroom, the nature of discrimination and disadvantage among those who might not gain admission to leading colleges and universities without the consideration of race, and the impact on white or Asian students of policies to consider race."
  • "Statewide bans on affirmative action have tended to have the greatest impact on flagship universities like Michigan and on professional schools."
  • "Ward Connerly, an African-American on the University of California Board of Regents who posed as a moderate but was a darling of conservatives, spearheaded a California ballot initiative, Proposition 209, to end affirmative action in public institutions and state programs."
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