A conservative rights group on Wednesday called on a US antidiscrimination agency to investigate Kellogg Co over alleged unlawful workplace diversity policies, accusing the grain maker of sexualizing its products.
This is the second complaint filed this week against an entity owned by America First Legal, a nonprofit organization headed by Stephen Miller, an adviser to former President Donald Trump.
America First, in a letter to the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), stated that Kellogg’s hiring, training, and promotion practices are designed to achieve a balance based on race and gender, which violates federal law that states Prohibits bias in the workplace.
It also criticized marketing campaigns, including boxes of Cheez-It crackers featuring drag queen RuPaul and boxes of cereal to celebrate LGBTQ Pride Month.
“Management has scrapped the company’s long-held family-friendly marketing approach to politicizing and sexualizing its products,” the group said.
The EEOC can sue companies if it finds that their employment practices constitute unlawful discrimination.
Kellogg did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Many legal experts believe there will be a surge in legal challenges to corporate diversity programs following a June ruling by the US Supreme Court that bans racially sensitive admissions policies in higher education.
For example, America First wrote in the letter that Kellogg said it would target “25% underrepresented leadership talent” by 2025 and run grant programs open only to ethnic minorities.
“Kellogg’s employment practices are unlawfully based on ‘equality,’ which is a euphemism for unlawful discrimination,” wrote Reed Rubenstein, an attorney for the group, in the letter.
America First said it also sent a letter to Kellogg’s board of directors Wednesday, threatening a shareholder dispute if the company persists with the allegedly illegal policies.
The nonprofit sued Target Corp on Tuesday on behalf of an investor, saying the retailer failed to anticipate the customer reaction to LGBTQ-themed merchandise, which hurt its stock value.
The complaints are part of a campaign by conservative right groups and Republican lawmakers against companies that have enacted “wake policies” on social issues such as race, gender and diversity.