June 26, 2023
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Houston, TX –The National Diversity Council (NDC) provides the following statement in anticipation of the pending U.S. Supreme Court decision that may impact affirmative action in admissions for higher education institutions nationwide and the latest legislation passed in Florida affecting funding for diversity, equity and inclusion initiatives in higher education.
For more than 40 years, higher education institutions have considered race as one of multiple factors in the admissions process.
“Race-conscious admissions programs have effectively enhanced diversity in colleges and universities across the United States and advanced greater opportunity for all,” said Anika Rahman, CEO of the National Diversity Council. “Any change to this policy will have devastating implications for academia, the corporate sector and our society.”
By the end of June, the U.S. Supreme Court is expected to issue its decisions in the Students for Fair Admissions, Inc. (SFAI) v. President and Fellows of Harvard and the SFAI v. University of North Carolina cases.
“Regardless of the outcome of this decision, the National Diversity Council will continue to advocate for diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) in higher education and beyond,” said Rahman. “DEI is an essential pillar of a just society.”
The NDC and its affiliate, the Florida Diversity Council, have additional concerns about Higher Education Bill SB-266, signed recently by Gov. Ron DeSantis, and due to become effective on July 1st. The law prohibits expenditures by any member of the Florida College System on programs and campus activities that advocate for diversity, equity and inclusion.
“We are especially concerned about anti-DEI efforts in Florida, because this state has the third largest Latino population in the nation, with one-third of its public colleges and universities designated as Hispanic-serving institutions,” said Rahman.
“As a nation, we must address and respond to the structural barriers that have systematically impacted marginalized communities, limiting their access to higher education and future opportunities for full participation in the workforce,” said Rahman. “DEI in higher education promotes greater levels of cultural awareness and decreases inequities while enhancing representation, knowledge-sharing and diversity of thought across different backgrounds and lived experiences,” she added.
The work of the National Diversity Council and its various state affiliates is critical to advancing DEI. “We are committed to providing our partners with the resources and tools to move the needle in the evolving DEI landscape,” said Rahman.
About The National Diversity Council
A non-profit organization committed to fostering a learning environment for organizations to grow in their knowledge of diversity. The council affords opportunities for organizations to share best practices and learn from top corporate leaders in the areas of diversity, equity and inclusion. More information about the National Diversity Council is available at: www.nationaldiversitycouncil.org.
Sr. Communication Specialist
National Diversity Council