San Francisco; June 21, 2021: In a unanimous opinion, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals held today that a shareholder of a California company has standing to sue over the state’s requirement that publicly held corporations have a minimum number of women on their boards. Represented by Pacific Legal Foundation, Creighton Meland filed a lawsuit in 2019, alleging the law violated the Equal Protection Clause of the Constitution.

“Today’s ruling confirms that California’s law is designed to change the behavior of shareholders, and that our client has standing to challenge the law,” said Anastasia Boden, a senior attorney at Pacific Legal Foundation. “The law is not only unconstitutional; it’s patronizing. It perpetuates the myth that women cannot make it to the boardroom without government help and are only making it there due to government’s help. We look forward to pressing our claim that the Equal Protection Clause guarantees that the government will treat individuals as individuals, not simply as members of the group they are born into.”

The case is Meland v. Weber.


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About Pacific Legal Foundation

Pacific Legal Foundation is a national nonprofit law firm that defends Americans threatened by government overreach and abuse. Since our founding in 1973, we challenge the government when it violates individual liberty and constitutional rights. With active cases in 34 states plus Washington, D.C., PLF represents clients in state and federal courts, with 18 wins of 20 cases litigated at the U.S. Supreme Court.

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