Florida Board of Governors expands DEI restrictions at public universities. Here's what to know
The Florida Board of Governors voted late Wednesday to keep public universities from using state and federal dollars for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion initiatives.
That includes campus activities, programs, clubs and faculty recruitment that support diversity, equity and inclusion efforts or political and social activism.
Gov. Ron DeSantis signed a bill into law in May, restricting DEI initiatives on campuses claiming they exclude some students. Opponents say these efforts will further marginalize Black, brown and LGBTQ+ students.
Here's the exact language of the policy:
"A state university or state university direct-support organization may not expend any state or federal funds to promote, support, or maintain any programs or campus activities that:
(a) Violate section 1000.05, Florida Statutes;
(b) Advocate for diversity, equity, and inclusion as defined in this regulation; or
(c) Promote or engage in political or social activism as defined in this regulation.
A state university or state university direct-support organization advocates for DEI when it engages in a program, policy or activity that:
(a) Advantages or disadvantages, or attempts to advantage or disadvantage an individual or group on the basis of color, sex, national origin, gender identity, or sexual orientation, to equalize or increase outcomes, participation or representation as compared to other individuals or groups;
(b) Promotes the position that a group or an individual’s action is inherently, unconsciously, or implicitly biased on the basis of color, sex, national origin, gender identity, or sexual orientation."
There are exceptions to this policy including when programs are required by state or federal law or for accreditation. Or when programs are paid for using private funds.
Also, programs for military veterans, Pell grant recipients, first-generation college students, nontraditional students, "2+2" transfer students from the Florida College system, students from low-income families or students with disabilities are exempt.
Starting this month, each state university in Florida must designate an official or group of officials who will set up disciplinary procedures around the new policy and enforce compliance.
Read the workup of the rule below: