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University of Florida Cuts DEI Jobs: State’s Crackdown or University’s Choice?

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University of Florida: NBC News

The University of Florida shook things up by axing all its diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) gigs, all thanks to a new state rule. Not only did UF hit delete on all those DEI positions, but they also pulled the plug on the Chief Diversity Officer’s office. They also said “no more” to DEI contracts with outside vendors. Why? Because the bigwigs at UF are following the beat of Florida Board of Governors regulation 9.016.
UF may be following orders, but this is obviously a sign of a wider crackdown on DEI efforts in the Sunshine State. The state rule also throws a wrench in the gears of using any funds for DEI stuff or getting involved in any political or social activism.
With a cool $5 million diverted from DEI projects to a faculty recruiting piggy bank, UF is trying to keep its academic street cred intact. But is this move a step forward for fair education or a stumble backwards?

Florida’s Governor Ron DeSantis is giving UF a thumbs up for this decision, labeling DEI “toxic.” But is that how everyone in Florida feels?
On the flip side, critics like Congressional Black Caucus Chairman Steven Horsford are saying this move ain’t sitting right. They’re calling out UF for being intolerant and implying that these changes are squashing free thought and diverse voices.
Despite the uproar, UF’s saying they’re still all about treating everyone with respect. But is kicking out the DEI crew really how you show it?

In the middle of all this, UF’s telling its soon-to-be-unemployed staff that they’ll get the usual goodbye cash. They, however, urge them to check out other gigs within the university.

Is that a real helping hand, or just a band-aid for a bigger problem?

With the myriad of questions waiting for answers, we’d love to hear what you have to say. Please leave a comment.

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