America First Legal Slams French Big Pharma Vaccine Maker, Sanofi, for Racial Discrimination: Files Federal Civil Rights Complaints

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, America First Legal’s (AFL) Center for Legal Equality filed a federal civil rights complaint with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and the U.S. Department of Labor Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) against Sanofi for alleged racial and sex discrimination. 

On December 21, 2023, James O’Keefe released a recording on X of former Sanofi Senior Vice President and U.S. Country Lead, Carole Huntsman. In the recording, Huntsman describes Sanofi’s “five-year plan” for “internal promotions and external hiring” that “breaks down every level” with “quarterly goals” tracked with data, so “every hiring manager knows” that “one in five hires needs to be a black employee” and “one in ten has to be a Latinx employee” to meet Sanofi’s goals.

The evidence strongly suggests Sanofi’s management has created a culture of systemic racism. Sanofi’s “Diverse Slate Policy” requires the “Talent Acquisition team” for each role to present “a minimum of one person of color and one female in each slate presented to a hiring leader” to achieve “at least 50% diverse representation of 25% POC and 25% female representation.”

By 2025, Sanofi intends to have “women representing 40% of [its] executives and 50% of [its] senior leadership” worldwide and to have “37% people of color representation” consisting of “12 percent Black, 10 percent Hispanic, and 14 percent Asian [excluding R&D and Digital]” in the United States.

Sanofi enforces these discriminatory policies through executive compensation, and the Board of Directors ensures that its “inclusion and diversity policy is cascaded down to “Senior Leaders” and “Executives.”  For example, Chief Executive Officer Paul Hudson’s 2022 compensation accounted for the fact that the “[n]umber of women recruited to positions at Level 5 and above” was “slightly below target.”

Sanofi also runs a race and sex quota-based “Supplier Diversity program.” According to CEO Paul Hudson and Global Head of Supplier Diversity Rakhi Agarwal, Sanofi will have “doubl[e] women-owned business spend and reach[] total diversity spend of 1.5 billion Euros (US $1,590,000,000) by 2025.”

Sanofi’s discriminatory policies may be due to French corporate social responsibility (CSR) laws, which require managers to consider issues that have nothing to do with business profitability. For example, France mandates gender pay equity reporting, which may result in monetary penalties for low scores. However, French law does not excuse Sanofi from breaking American civil rights laws. 

If international companies want to do business in the United States, they must comply with American law.

America First Legal will not cease fighting corporate America’s destructive, illegal, and repugnant race-based hiring and contracting practices. Sanofi’s management has chosen to elevate its immoral DEI policies over the law; it is time that they face the consequences.

Statement from Gene Hamilton, America First Legal Vice President and General Counsel:

“Many in the business world have lost their minds. Instead of valuing individuals as individuals and selecting personnel for hiring and promotion based on merit, radical advocates have convinced otherwise intelligent people in corporate America that the only thing that matters is a person’s skin color or sex. Unsurprisingly, these race-based employment practices are illegal, and we are wholly committed to ensuring that they end everywhere that we find them, “ said Gene Hamilton.

Read the letters here and here.

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