Home US University of Florida FIRES all 28 DEI employees after DeSantis law prohibits schools from using state money for diversity, equity and inclusion

University of Florida FIRES all 28 DEI employees after DeSantis law prohibits schools from using state money for diversity, equity and inclusion

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The University of Florida has eliminated all positions affiliated with Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, a leaked memo sent to 28 laid-off employees revealed Friday.

The University of Florida has eliminated all positions affiliated with Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI).

The move, laid out in a leaked administrative memo, is the latest in the state’s mission to reject DEI initiatives from public institutions.

The University’s Director of Public Affairs, Cynthia Roldán, confirmed that the cut consisted of 13 full-time positions, as well as 15 administrative appointments, 28 in total.

It also marks the end of the school’s office dedicated to diversity, which opened just six years ago. The following year, Republican Ron DeSantis would become governor and has since passed a litany of laws to remove DEI lessons and literature from schools.

The leaked memo cites one such law: a state Board of Governors regulation that prohibits the state’s public universities from spending state or federal funds to maintain programs that “uphold diversity, equity and inclusion.”

The University of Florida has eliminated all positions affiliated with Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, a leaked memo sent to 28 laid-off employees revealed Friday.

The University of Florida has eliminated all positions affiliated with Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, a leaked memo sent to 28 laid-off employees revealed Friday.

The move, laid out in a leaked administrative memo, serves as the latest example of Ron DeSantis' attack to eliminate DEI initiatives from public institutions.

The move, laid out in a leaked administrative memo, serves as the latest example of Ron DeSantis' attack to eliminate DEI initiatives from public institutions.

The move, laid out in a leaked administrative memo, serves as the latest example of Ron DeSantis’ attack to eliminate DEI initiatives from public institutions.

“To comply with Florida Board of Governors Regulation 9.016 on prohibited expenditures, the University of Florida has closed the Office of the Chief Diversity Officer,” Chancellor J. Scott Angle and other school officials wrote.

“(The university also) eliminated DEI positions and administrative appointments, and stopped DEI-focused contracts with third-party vendors.”

The memo goes on to tell the 28 retired employees that they will be provided “12 weeks of (severance pay)” and will be encouraged to apply elsewhere within the university.

Those staff members, who include Chief Marsha McGriff, Assistant Principal Farrah Harvey and Senior Administrator Wilma Rogers, were encouraged to apply between now and April 19, “for expedited consideration for different positions currently posted on University”.

At the time of this writing, the school has more than one hundred vacancies, although most require certain technical knowledge or are interns in custodial roles.

“University of Florida Human Resources will work to expedite the interview process and provide a response to all requests within the twelve-week timeframe,” wrote Angle and Vice President Amy Meyers Hass and Vice President of Human Resources Melissa Curry.

The university also announced how the Office of the Chief Financial Officer will now reallocate approximately $5 million in funds previously reserved for DEI to a “faculty recruitment fund to be administered by the Office of the Provost.”

They did not indicate specific plans for the addition.

The leaked memo sent to the 13 full-time positions and 15 administrative appointments who had their positions eliminated, sent by Provost J. Scott Angle Angle and Vice President Amy Meyers Hass and Vice President for Human Resources Melissa Curry.

The leaked memo sent to the 13 full-time positions and 15 administrative appointments who had their positions eliminated, sent by Provost J. Scott Angle Angle and Vice President Amy Meyers Hass and Vice President for Human Resources Melissa Curry.

The leaked memo sent to the 13 full-time positions and 15 administrative appointments who had their positions eliminated, sent by Provost J. Scott Angle Angle and Vice President Amy Meyers Hass and Vice President for Human Resources Melissa Curry.

Staff, including DEI Office Chief Marsha McGriff, were encouraged to apply elsewhere within the public school.

Staff, including DEI Office Chief Marsha McGriff, were encouraged to apply elsewhere within the public school.

Staff, including DEI Office Chief Marsha McGriff, were encouraged to apply elsewhere within the public school.

Farrah Harvey, Deputy Director of DEI

Farrah Harvey, Deputy Director of DEI

Wilma Rogers, DEI Office Administrator

Wilma Rogers, DEI Office Administrator

She and staff like Assistant Principal Farrah Harvey and Senior Administrator Wilma Rogers were urged to apply between now and April 19, “for expedited consideration for different positions currently posted at the university.”

The school further revealed how the move will cause approximately $5 million in funds previously reserved for DEI to be reallocated to a “faculty recruitment fund to be administered by the Office of the Provost.” They did not indicate specific plans for the addition.

Protesters gather at the site of a planned speech by white nationalist Richard Spencer, who popularized the term “alt-right,” on campus in October 2017. Subsection 3 of Regulation 9.016 further prohibits public schools and their direct support organizations use public services. tax dollars on campus activities that ‘promote or engage in political or social activism’

DeSantis, who celebrated the firings on social media, is seen signing a bill during a news conference at the Palm Beach Police Department headquarters in Palm Beach on Thursday. He has passed several laws to remove DEI lessons and literature from schools since he became governor in 2019.

DeSantis, who celebrated the firings on social media, is seen signing a bill during a news conference at the Palm Beach Police Department headquarters in Palm Beach on Thursday. He has passed several laws to remove DEI lessons and literature from schools since he became governor in 2019.

DeSantis, who celebrated the firings on social media, is seen signing a bill during a news conference at the Palm Beach Police Department headquarters in Palm Beach on Thursday. He has passed several laws to remove DEI lessons and literature from schools since he became governor in 2019.

This includes the bill cited by school officials in their decision, Senate Bill 266, which Florida's governor, 45, signed in May, which prohibits the use of state and federal funds for DEI in the System. University of Florida.

This includes the bill cited by school officials in their decision, Senate Bill 266, which Florida's governor, 45, signed in May, which prohibits the use of state and federal funds for DEI in the System. University of Florida.

This includes the bill cited by school officials in their decision, Senate Bill 266, which Florida’s governor, 45, signed in May, which prohibits the use of state and federal funds for DEI in the System. University of Florida.

The law, separate from DeSantis’ now-famous Don’t Say Gay bill, classifies these policies and lessons as “differential or preferential treatment,” based on race, color, sex, national origin, gender identity, or sexual orientation.

Meanwhile, DeSantis celebrated the layoffs on social media, retweeting a screenshot of the memo just days after his Board of Governors officially ruled that public schools could not use funds to promote DEI-related work.

“DEI is toxic and has no place in our public universities,” he wrote on the platform now known as X.

“I’m glad Florida was the first state to eliminate DEI and I hope more states follow suit.”

The hapless 2024 candidate issued another celebratory post on his own account, writing to his roughly 2.3 million followers: “Florida is where DEI is going to die.”

A day earlier, the two-term governor signed a law allowing public release of grand jury documents such as those related to Florida’s 2006 investigation into Jeffrey Epstein, one of several he has signed into law since taking office in 2019.

This includes the bill cited by school officials in their decision, Senate Bill 266, which Florida’s governor, 45, signed in May, which prohibits the use of state and federal funds for DEI in the System. University of Florida.

Subsection 3 of Regulation 9.016 also prohibits state schools and their direct support organizations from using public tax dollars for university activities that “promote or engage in political or social activism.”

First, the statute prohibits any spending directed toward ‘Diversity, Equity, or Inclusion’ or ‘DEI’ in any capacity, whether ‘university activity’ or policies that classify ‘individuals based on race, color, sex, national origin, gender identity or sexual orientation.’

The law, separate from DeSantis’ now-famous Don’t Say Gay bill, classifies these policies and lessons as “differential or preferential treatment,” based on race, color, sex, national origin, gender identity, or sexual orientation.

School officials, meanwhile, added a defiant exclamation to the end of their internal email, writing that the University of Florida will remain “unwavering in (its) commitment to universal human dignity.”

“As we educate students by thoughtfully engaging a wide range of ideas and viewpoints,” they continued, “we will continue to foster a community of trust and respect for every member of Gator Nation.”

“The University of Florida is an elite institution thanks to our incredible faculty committed to teaching, discovery and service,” the memo concludes.

DailyMail.com has contacted the University of Florida, the latest Sunshine State school to withdraw its DEI department, for comment.

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