I risked my life serving my country in Iraq… but now I’ve lost my job at a bank because I’m a white man

A white, male Iraq war veteran is suing a top US bank, saying he was pushed aside in favor of less-qualified candidates in an aggressive diversity-hiring push.

Chris Smith says Ally Financial ignored his 20 years’ experience in security and intelligence work and gave the job he wanted to an ex-Walmart employee because she was a woman.

He got a junior role in the North Carolina office, but was then sidelined by a boss who railed against ‘white supremacy,’ was treated unfairly, and ended up quitting within weeks, he says.

It’s the latest lawsuit from America First Legal (AFL), a campaign group led by former Trump administration officials, that fights diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI), policies in the US.

Advocates of DEI say it helps get more women and minorities into colleges and workplaces, but critics say it ends up hurting straight, white men.

Chris Smith was only offered the most junior job in Ally’s threat team despite his decades of experience  

Ally Financial, an $8 billion-a-year bank holding firm headquartered in Detroit, Michigan, did not answer DailyMail.com’s request for comment.

‘Federal law is clear — no discrimination means no discrimination,’ said AFL lawyer Gene Hamilton.

‘No American should ever face discrimination on account of their race or sex, and we will fight to achieve justice for our client.’

The case was filed at the US District Court for the western district of North Carolina on Tuesday.

Smith, a former Marine and Army intelligence officer who served in Iraq and Afghanistan and has two decades of experience in security, applied for three roles in Ally’s newly-created ‘threat division’ unit in 2023.

He was offered and accepted the lowest-paying role as a security analyst, on about $75,000 a year.

Ally hired Rachel Stuckey, a white woman who had worked for the previous four years at Walmart, as team manager.

Stuckey also had a year of experience in counterterrorism work in Israel.

Smith says Stuckey was hired ‘because of her sex’ so the bank could meet DEI targets.

Ally also hired a less-qualified black woman and a black man in senior analyst roles above Smith, despite his greater experience, it is claimed.

Once he started working in the Charlotte office in September 2023, Smith says he faced further discrimination.

He was not properly credited for his work, he says.

His teammates were sent on training courses, could work from home, and got parking spots near the office, but Smith did not.

He was also mistreated by Ally director Bruce Bellamy, who was ‘fixated on DEI,’ court papers claim.

Smith says he had to work five days a week in Ally's Charlotte office when co-workers were allowed to operate remotely

Smith says he had to work five days a week in Ally’s Charlotte office when co-workers were allowed to operate remotely 

Ally has aggressive diversity hiring targets, documents from America First Legal show

Ally has aggressive diversity hiring targets, documents from America First Legal show

Ally boss Bruce Bellamy says the bank's gravest threats were 'white supremacists, anti-DEI groups, and anti-woke groups,' it is claimed

Ally boss Bruce Bellamy says the bank’s gravest threats were ‘white supremacists, anti-DEI groups, and anti-woke groups,’ it is claimed

Bellamy said the bank’s gravest security threats were ‘white supremacists, anti-DEI groups, and anti-woke groups.’

When Smith disagreed, the boss ‘took particular umbrage at a white male questioning his views,’ it is claimed.

Bellamy and Stuckey ‘isolated Smith from other Ally employees, refused to credit him for his work product, and imposed substantial obstacles on his ability to perform his job duties, harming his performance,’ the papers say.

AFL lawyer Gene Hamilton

AFL lawyer Gene Hamilton

The ‘differential and negative treatment … was motivated by Smith’s race and sex,’ they add.

Smith quit on September 18 and has since struggled to get paying work.

The 20-page lawsuit says Ally violated the race and sex protections of the Civil Rights Act.

Smith seeks a jury trial, compensation, and his legal costs paid.

Ally did not comment on the lawsuit.

The company has a tough DEI policy and says it works hard to build a ‘diverse and talented team.’

It is close to evenly split between men and woman, Ally says.

‘We increased or maintained representation of women and people of color in our manager and above roles, and redesigned programs to create more opportunities for individuals new to their roles in the company,’ Ally said in a recent report.

The case is part of a growing number of suits and filings against DEI practices since the US Supreme Court’s landmark June 2023 ruling to end affirmative action in college admissions.

AFL, which is led by former President Donald Trump adviser Stephen Miller, has filed more than 15 lawsuits and more than 30 complaints to a US civil rights agency.

Lawsuits have claimed that hiring and recruitment decisions made around both jobs and fellowships at large companies are biased against white workers.

‘Major corporations across the United States have … programs and policies that blatantly discriminate against American citizens for the very things that they cannot control,’ said AFL’s Hamilton.

Advocates of DEI schemes say they bring more black, brown, female, and queer talent into offices and colleges and raise morale across the board.

But critics say they’re a ‘woke’ virtue-signaling exercise that fosters backlash discrimination against straight, white men.

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk