HomeAsian AmericansUT Austin lays off staff to comply with Texas' DEI ban

UT Austin lays off staff to comply with Texas’ DEI ban

The University of Texas at Austin is laying off staff members to comply with Texas’ recent ban on diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) programs.

KUT News reports that 60 staffers have been laid off, according to the Texas Conference of the American Association of University Professors and the Texas NAACP. The cuts are a result of Senate Bill 17, which bans DEI programs and trainings at public universities in Texas.

According to The Texas Tribune, the university is also eliminating its Division of Campus and Community Engagement DCCE, which provided resources to “those who may face the most significant challenges in accessing” education.

UT Austin President Jay Hartzell says the school would redirect funds originally meant for DEI programs to other areas.

“As part of this reallocation, associate or assistant deans who were formerly focused on DEI will return to their full-time faculty positions,” Hartzell said per CNN. “The positions that provided support for those associate and assistant deans and a small number of staff roles across campus that were formerly focused on DEI will no longer be funded.”

On Tuesday, students, faculty and staff gathered in three different locations on campus to discuss the closure

“I am one of the staff who was fired,” an attendee who used to run a study abroad program for low-income students said, according to The Texas Tribune. “Although we’ve been fired, there’s still people on this campus who care about you, despite everything.”

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