Five whistleblowers said on Thursday that American Express favors black employees over white employees, regardless of their qualifications, when considering them for promotions.
One anonymous former employee said in an interview with Fox Business that American Express would not promote white employees at all.
“I wanted to move up really bad. I did everything I was supposed to do in terms of trainings and extra work I was on committees, going out of my way to be helpful, being a leader on team calls and national calls,” the employee said. “I saw the writing on the wall: There’s no way I can get promoted because of the color of my skin.”
The current and former employees describe the practice as “reverse discrimination,” apparently meaning that discrimination normally targets blacks but in this instance targets whites.
“Before this happened, they would tell you how you would move up. ‘These are the steps you would take,’ et cetera. No longer did that matter because all that matters now is the color of the candidate’s skin,” a former employee said. “I would see these emails showing who got promoted. I’d say nine times out of 10, it was a black person in that role.”
The whistleblowers do not work in human resources and do not have access to the company’s hiring, training, and promotion documents, which may reveal or dispel their claims of anti-white policies.
A former mixed-race employee agreed that “that minorities are treated preferentially at American Express.”‘
The former employee said that American Express “would not allow a director to make any hiring decisions unless there were enough black people in the candidate pool.”
American Express acknowledged in a statement that it has adopted anti-white policies, though the company calls them “diversity, equity, and inclusion programs.”
The company stated that these programs “are not based on any specific theory, nor are they targeted to a specific group of employees.”
American Express said it bases promotion decisions “on individual business and leadership performance,” even though the “company values” include “fostering a diverse and inclusive culture.”