UNC-Chapel Hill, DEI, Policing, Pro-Palestinian

UNC-Chapel Hill’s Board Divests DEI Funds To Policing

The news comes ahead a statewide board vote to reverse DEI policy in North Carolina.

The board at UNC-Chapel Hill has voted to divest funding from its DEI programming and will instead redistribute the money into public safety resources, including policing.

The flagship school within the North Carolina public university system made the decision during a special budget meeting on May 13. The $2.3 million funding will no longer go toward DEI initiatives and programming within its Chapel Hill campus. Instead, per NBC News, the money will be funneled into public safety and policing efforts.

The news also comes as UNC students partake in pro-Palestinian protests that have sparked across college campuses nationwide. Like other student protestors, participants have faced repercussions by law enforcement, including arrests at UNC. The shift for the funds comes amid heightened security measures for the peaceful protests.

“It’s important to consider the needs of all 30,000 students, not just the 100 or so that may want to disrupt the university’s operations,” explained the school’s Budget Committee Vice Chair Marty Kotis. “It takes away resources for others.”

The vote at UNC also aligns with the statewide board’s recent vote to replace the DEI policy established in 2019. In April, its Committee on University Governance motioned to reverse the policy. As a result, the full board will vote to finalize the decision in May.

If passed, the decision could result in the removal of DEI offices and roles for 17 schools in the state. The roles include those who work with the school’s administration to implement DEI efforts within its institutions.

With this money no longer distributed to DEI programming, its diversity office risks an immediate shutdown. This growing threat against DEI offices at schools will most impact students and educators of color, as these policies have worked to ensure spaces and policies protect them from discrimination and ensure their presence on campus.

As DEI remains under attack, underrepresented groups are cautious of how these policy reversals will impact their experiences in academia.

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