"This issue paper (IP) explains the concept of narrow tailoring and how the concept fits within the strict scrutiny test. This IP should be of particular interest to the commissioners because it explains the legal limitations on how recommendations made by the MLDC [Military Leadership Diversity Commission] can be implemented. This IP is one of a three-part series that covers the strict scrutiny test used by courts to decide whether policies that use different standards for individuals based on membership in one or more suspect classes are legal. There are two parts to the strict scrutiny test: (1) the concept of compelling government interest--whether the goal the policy is trying to achieve is sufficiently important to justify a particular use of suspect classification (the subject of the second IP in the series) and (2) the concept of narrow tailoring-- whether the policy achieves its goals with as little negative effect as possible on other groups (the subject of this IP). A policy must fulfill both of these requirements to pass the strict scrutiny test. A party challenging a policy under the strict scrutiny test will prevail if he or she demonstrates either that the cited government interest is not compelling or that the policy is not narrowly tailored. This paper shows that, for a policy to be narrowly tailored, policymakers designing a policy must consider demographically neutral approaches, and the policy must be designed to achieve its set goals, have a focused scope, be flexible and not use quotas, not unduly trammel the rights of others, and be temporary."
Military Leadership Diversity Commission Issue Paper No. 37
Department of Defense Office of Diversity Management and Equal Opportunity: http://diversity.defense.gov/