UT Dallas Scrapping DEI Jobs

The University of Texas at Dallas
The University of Texas at Dallas | Image by The University of Texas at Dallas

The University of Texas at Dallas is scrapping approximately 20 positions, citing the state’s ban on “diversity, equity, and inclusion” initiatives that recently went into effect.

UTD President Richard Benson posted a statement last week regarding the elimination of the positions.

“Last year we made several organizational changes to comply with Texas Senate Bill 17 (SB 17). This legislation prohibits public universities from maintaining diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) offices and from conducting or supporting DEI activities, trainings, and programs. Our actions ensured that we were fully compliant with SB 17 as of January 1, 2024, the effective date of the legislation,” Benson said.

“Since then, we have continued to evaluate our SB 17 response and how to realign many of the programs impacted by the legislation. As a result, effective April 30, 2024, the Office of Campus Resources and Support (OCRS) and approximately 20 associated jobs will be eliminated. A limited number of functions will be moved to other administrative units to ensure continuity of services to our students, faculty, and staff,” he said.

The University of Texas at Austin was recently forced to eliminate 60 employees who worked in various DEI programs on campus. The offices where they worked will be permanently closed by May 31, as reported by Houston Landing.

A seeming trend has emerged at a number of institutions of higher education across the state, including UT Austin and Texas A&M, in which job postings maintained after January 1, 2024, were being removed or altered in response to SB 17, as previously reported by The Dallas Express.

Two job listings at UT Austin were removed completely, while several others were modified, for instance. Dallas College was found to have 12 job postings requiring applicants to advance or adhere to DEI as a condition of employment in what appeared to be a contravention of state law, DX reported.

SB 17 bars all state-funded colleges and universities from keeping current DEI programs or creating DEI programs and prohibits an employee from conducting tasks that are DEI-related.

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