State legislative challenges to diversity, equity and inclusion receive pushback
A number of bills this legislative session challenging diversity, equity and inclusion efforts have received pushback.
The pushback has mainly come from Democrats, higher education institutions and the NAACP, Salt Lake City branch.
Critics of the bills say they are vague and could encourage self-censorship and deepen existing inequalities.
There have been four bills targeting DEI efforts. SB283 originally would have banned diversity, equity and inclusion efforts in high education before the sponsor opted to have it push for a study instead.
HB427 would limit how K-12 educators are allowed to discuss racism, sexism, ageism, and religious discrimination in classrooms.
HB441 would prohibit schools and state entities from asking applicants about what they have done to further inclusion.
HB451 would require schools to create a neutrality policy and crack down on how controversial issues are discussed in schools.
Higher education institutions have spoken against the bills and have successfully urged lawmakers to study diversity, equity and inclusion offices in higher education rather than banning them.