Kentucky Anti-DEI Bill Stalls, Sees Likely End

By  - 

The prominent legislation targeting diversity, equity, and inclusion programs across public higher education in the state of Kentucky failed to pass the General Assembly on Thursday, marking the likely end to its momentum and passage.

Senate Bill 6 would have prohibited public higher education institutions from funding and allocating resources to DEI offices and staff roles charged with “implementing or promoting” DEI outside of the classroom. The bill text refers to a variety of DEI practices as “discriminatory concepts.” 

The House adjourned late Thursday night without agreeing to changes made by the House of Representatives to one of its priority bills earlier this month. As a result, the Assembly missed its deadline to move forward the legislation.

Now, the bill may be taken up in the final two days of the legislative session in April, however, it will be open to a 10-day-veto recess. This is likely to happen, as Democratic Gov. Andy Beshear has voiced his support for DEI programming.

Overall, leaders say that the bill saw many changes from its original draft introduced in the Senate. Republican Senate President Robert Stivers said the bill has been contentious within the Republican Caucus, but didn’t elaborate further, reports the Lexington Herald Leader.

Senate Bill 6 largely mirrors others proposed across the country in a movement that began in late 2022. Recently, anti-DEI movement has been seen in Arizona, Kansas, and Indiana.