Pedestrians walk past the Legislative Building at the Capitol in Olympia on Monday. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)

Pedestrians walk past the Legislative Building at the Capitol in Olympia on Monday. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)

Affirmative action initiative will be on legislators’ agenda

The measure would provide equal opportunities through methods designed to increase diversity.

Associated Press

OLYMPIA — An initiative that would bring back affirmative action in Washington state will be considered by legislators and could go to voters on the November ballot.

Secretary of State Kim Wyman’s spokesman Erich Ebel said Thursday that the Initiative 1000 campaign collected enough signatures to certify the measure.

Initiative 1000 would allow the state government to use affirmative action policies that do not constitute preferential treatment to remedy discrimination in public employment, education and contracting.

The initiative brought by a mainly African-American-led coalition would define affirmative action as providing equal opportunities through recruitment, hiring, outreach, training and other methods designed to increase diversity.

The measure seeks to undo a 1998 initiative approved by Washington voters that banned the government from discriminating against or granting preferential treatment to people and groups based on factors such as race or gender.

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