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Effective Compliance with Antidiscrimination Law: Corporate Personhood, Purpose and Social Responsibility

21 Pages Posted: 8 Feb 2017 Last revised: 11 Apr 2017

Cheryl Lyn Wade

St. John's University - School of Law

Date Written: February 7, 2017

Abstract

I begin the essay with an examination of the overlap between corporate governance and corporate social responsibility. After doing so, I explore the notions of corporate personhood and purpose in order to suggest ways to make compliance programs less cosmetic and defensive and more meaningful and effective. I conclude that the decision making that is inherent in corporate governance is an important factor in the corporate social responsibility equation. There is a gap that separates the fulfillment of fiduciary duties (including the installation and upkeep of a compliance program) and best practices. Companies and their managers can win litigation, or perhaps even avoid litigation that alleges fiduciary duty breach by doing the bare minimum. But what can inspire them to adhere to best practices, particularly when it comes to installing and maintaining an effective compliance program? My answer to this question in this essay requires an exploration of how corporate governance and corporate social responsibility are not clearly separate, and an examination of corporate personhood and purpose that may inspire businesses to adhere to best practices.

Suggested Citation

Wade, Cheryl Lyn, Effective Compliance with Antidiscrimination Law: Corporate Personhood, Purpose and Social Responsibility (February 7, 2017). Washington and Lee Law Review, Vol. 74, 2017, Forthcoming; St. John's Legal Studies Research Paper No. 17-0001. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2913725

Cheryl Lyn Wade (Contact Author)

St. John's University - School of Law ( email )

8000 Utopia Parkway
Law School Building, Room 4-09
Jamaica, NY 11439
United States
718-990-6015 (Phone)

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