DeSantis Signs Bill to Defund DEI Programs at Florida Colleges

By  - 
Gov. Ron DeSantis gives a speech at 2021 Student Action Summit hosted by Turning Point USA. Photo courtesy of Gage Skidmore via Wikimedia Commons

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) signed several bills Monday that will bring major changes to the state’s higher education system, including banning public colleges and universities from spending money on diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) programs.

The newly approved SB 266 prohibits public colleges from using state or federal funds to support DEI initiatives. It also limits universities from teaching general education courses that “distort” historical events, promote “identity politics,” or are based on theories of systemic racism, sexism, oppression, or privilege in the United States.

DeSantis also signed HB 931, which eliminates diversity statement requirements when hiring students, faculty, or staff.

“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,” DeSantis said during a bill-signing ceremony at the New College of Florida. “And that has no place in our public institutions. This bill says the whole experiment with DEI is coming to an end in the state of Florida.”