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UNC Chapel Hill to slash $2.3M in DEI funding, divert money to police, campus safety

The UNC-Chapel Hill Board of Trustees on Monday agreed to eliminate $2.3 million in diversity, equity and inclusion funding and allocate the money spent on such efforts to police and campus safety instead, the Raleigh News & Observer reported.

That means DEI staffers will likely be terminated or transferred, as there is one senior-level administrator responsible for DEI advancement in each school, the newspaper reported.

“The move comes as the UNC Board of Governors, which governs all public universities in the state, is expected to vote on restricting DEI programs statewide next week,” the Observer reported, adding:

Board Chair David Boliek told the News & Observer he expected jobs would be eliminated as a result of the reallocation.

“My personal opinion is that there’s administrative bloat in the university,” he said. “… Any cuts in administration and diverting of dollars to rubber-meets-the-road efforts like public safety and teaching is important.”

Trustee Marty Kotis said law enforcement needed the money following pro-Palestinian campus protests that began last month and resulted in several arrests.

“It’s important to consider the needs of all 30,000 students, not just 100 or so that may want to disrupt the university’s operations,” he said.

Boliek said the policy was in consideration before the protests began.

Even as UNC Chapel Hill has embraced DEI, the campus has not seen an increase in civility.

Axing DEI comes after the university has been rocked with protests for at least the last six years, from riots over its former Confederate Silent Sam statue — that was eventually toppled by a mob of angry students, faculty and community members; to protests during the Black Lives Matter movement; to recent unrest from anti-Israel activists.

“I think that DEI is divisive. I don’t think it’s productive. I don’t think it gives a return on investment to taxpayers and to the institution itself,” Boliek reportedly said at the meeting.

Monday’s decision is also not the first time UNC-CH trustees have chipped away at the DEI dogma on the school they oversee. Last summer, they voted to ban not only the use of race in admissions — but also in all hiring, including employees and contract work.

MORE: UNC Chapel Hill, which led fight for race-based admissions, now works to fully abolish it

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About the Author
Fix Editor
Jennifer Kabbany is editor-in-chief of The College Fix.