Women-Led Equity Group Slams DeSantis’ Bill Banning Florida College Diversity Programs

By Bilal G. Morris

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis’ culture wars are in full effect.

On Monday, DeSantis signed a bill prohibiting colleges and universities in his state from spending money on diversity, equity and inclusion programs and initiatives. 

According to Florida Senate Bill 266, which will go into effect July 1, colleges and universities, “may not expend any funds for programs or campus activities that violate the FEEA; advocate for diversity, equity, and inclusion; or promote or engage in political or social activism.”

The new bill is the latest step in Ron DeSantis’ war on “woke” ideology. 

“This has basically been used as a veneer to impose an ideological agenda and that is wrong,” DeSantis said. “In fact, if you look at the way this has actually been implemented across the country, DEI is better viewed as standing for discrimination, exclusion and indoctrination, and that has no place in our public institutions.”

Women-led Equity group For The Culture called DeSantis’ words baseless and described the bill as “dangerous.”

“Governor Ron DeSantis’ declaration that ‘DEI is better viewed as standing for discrimination, exclusion and indoctrination,’ is baseless and inflammatory, an assertion to further galvanize a base against anything that seeks to challenge white supremacy and other systems of oppression,” the organization said in a press release.

“His claim that he wants higher education in Florida to focus on “the classical mission” of what a university is supposed to be is untrue as evidenced by his clear plan to turn New College into a bastion of conservative ideology. Effective July 1, 2023, this law has dangerous local and national implications on program curricula, academic offerings and autonomy, student success and wellbeing, and overall campus safety. “

The organization also issued a call to action to push back against this and other legislative attacks.