Case Analysis 1
Case study: (Native) American Diversity
Diversity conversations seldom include Native Americans. There is even disagreement over howthese individuals should be identified. But whether we use the terms “American Indian” or “Native American,” or refer to their tribal affiliation (Cherokees are the largest, with over800,000 members), the prevailing perception is that Native Americans are a relatively homogenous group.
The relations between the U.S. government and Native Americans have certainly improved, conflicts are still often solved by actions of the U.S. military or are referred to the Bureau of Indian Affairs, a non-Indian Federal organization. As a result, diversity initiatives aimed at Native Americans face unique challenges. One grows out of the tension between assimilation and the desire to maintain a strong Native American and tribal identity. This drives discussions over the role of tribal courts and tribal governments relative to issues of child custody, sentencing guidelines, and general policies aimed at “mainstreaming” Native American children.Another challenge stems from the fact that for many Native Americans there is no clear definition of religion—religious beliefs are part of their way of life and cannot be separated. Consequently, it is not clear what protections are afforded to Native Americans under the First Amendment, or what religious rights they have (although in one case employees at Oglala Lakota College are granted 5 days of leave for their Sun Dance ceremony).
Native Americans face many of the same challenges confronting other minority groups, including stereotypes, prejudice, and bias, as well as the relative lack of quality education, poverty, early parenthood and substance abuse. But while all Civil Rights legislation applies to Native Americans (Native Americans were granted citizenship rights in 1924), few cases have been brought on behalf of Native Americans. In fact, it was only in 1997 that the Civil Rights Division of the U.S. Department of Justice first enforced the education statues on behalf of Native Americans by ordering a Utah school district to build a new high school in a remote community populated mostly by Navajo and Paiute tribe members.
Native Americans are much more likely to be bilingual when compared with the general population—over 70 percent of the Navajo nation is bilingual, for instance. Even though the second language involved is often a tribal language, these statistics suggest that Native Americans have strong language skills. They also appear to have strong entrepreneurial skills: There are now over 400 tribal gaming casinos, operated across 30 states, generating $15.5 billion dollars in annual revenues. It therefore seems clear that Native Americans represent a growing yet vastly underutilized group of employees who have a strong cultural tradition combined with the strong entrepreneurial skills. They clearly deserve more attention as the target of diversity initiatives.
Questions to answer: Your answers should be attached in a MS Word file format. Font size: 12; Font style: Times Roman, Double line spacing. A cover page should be included. Your document should include page numbering.
What are the different terms used to identify Native Americans?
In what year was the Native Americans granted citizenship rights?
In what year did the Civil Rights Division of U.S. Department of Justice first enforced the education statues on behalf of Native Americans?
What group of employees does the Native Americans represent?
Imagine you are the HR manager of an organization. In a minimum of 250 words what special strategies might you adopt to recruit more Native Americans to apply for positions in your organization?
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