May 15, 2023
We are beyond disappointed that Florida Governor Ron DeSantis has signed a new law (SB 266) that takes direct aim at the work of diversity, equity and inclusion efforts in higher education. Our work makes a difference to help students succeed, and it is this progress such legislation attempts to destroy by misrepresenting it in a divisive narrative. These laws will harm students and hurt Florida’s higher education system.
As the recent spate of legislative attacks has shown, the work of diversity, equity and inclusion on college and university campuses is grossly misunderstood, misrepresented and undervalued. It has been for years. Instead of attempting to understand the work we do, policymakers are seeking to seed division and cause confusion.
Scholarly research points to the necessity of our work for student success. Everyone from Fortune 500 companies, non-profits, the military and the federal government agree on its importance for strengthening the future of all in our country.
To our members in Florida and in other states who may be affected by this news: Know that we support you and all the work that you do to make your campuses safer and more supportive for all students, faculty and staff. Your steadfast commitment to this work, even and especially in the face of adversity, does not go unnoticed. We will work together to reject attempts to dismantle and roll back progress. While the future may appear uncertain, we will be with you every step of the way as we collectively champion justice, equity, diversity and inclusion for all.
The National Association of Diversity Officers in Higher Education (NADOHE) is the preeminent voice for chief diversity officers. As the leader of the national conversation on diversity, equity, and inclusion, it investigates, influences, and innovates to transform higher education so that inclusive excellence lives at its core.