attorney general/doj file photo
While the Justice Department is more integrated than ever, it still lags behind when it comes to women and people of color, Attorney General Eric Holder said in a speech aimed at young people.
“Consider careers here at at the United States Department of Justice,” Holder said during the speech, speaking to students who were visiting Washington from a Catholic school in San Francisco, according to CNS News.
Holder also urged new immigrants to consider a Justice Department career.
“Now, statistics show that in recent years, women and people of color have made up a greater percentage of both licensed lawyers and law students,” he said. “Progress remains too often slow, and the law continues to lag behind many other fields. So we need to ensure that the coming decades witness an uptick in the numbers of women, people with disabilities, people of color, and new immigrants finding productive avenues into this profession and others across the American workforce.”
Holder said the fact that he and President Obama are black is not an indication that the “long struggle to overcome disparity and discrimination” is over.
“Now, I know it may be tempting — it may be tempting for some, when they look at the accomplished professionals in this room or the lawyer who works in the Oval Office or consider the fact that I have the privilege of serving as the attorney general of the United States, to feel that this country’s long struggle to overcome disparity and discrimination has ended. But as Justice Sonia Sotomayor said just yesterday in her courageous and very personal dissent in the Michigan college admissions case, we ought not, and I quote, ‘wish away rather than confront the racial inequality that exists in our society. The way to stop discrimination on the basis of race is to speak openly and candidly on the subject of race,’ end quote.”