Trump administration rolls back racial diversity guidelines for colleges

Trump administration rolls back racial diversity guidelines for colleges

The Trump administration is moving to rescind Obama-era guidance that encouraged schools to take a person's race into account to encourage diversity in admissions, a USA official said Tuesday.

Anurima Bhargava, who headed civil rights enforcement in schools for the Justice Department under President Barack Obama and co-authored the Obama-era guidance, said that the policy withdrawal was timed for brief filings in the Harvard litigation, due at the end of the month. Analysts say the choice of justice could influence the future of affirmative action, among many other issues.

"The executive branch can not circumvent Congress or the courts by creating guidance that goes beyond the law and-in some instances-stays on the books for decades", Justice Department spokesperson Devin O'Malley told CNN in a statement. Affirmative action, a heated issue, has been revisited by the U.S. Supreme Court several times since since the 1970s.

"We condemn the Department of Education's politically motivated attack on affirmative action and deliberate attempt to discourage colleges and universities from pursuing racial diversity at our nation's colleges and universities", Kristen Clarke, president and executive director of the Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, said in a statement.

In summary, the guidelines give institutions options on how to promote racial diversity without specifically targeting and isolating race as a primary factor in the admissions decision.

The Trump administration's move does not change the law on affirmative action.

The new guidance will not have the force of law, but schools will presumably be able to defend themselves from lawsuits by following administration policy.

Upstate NY under hot weather alert for 'prolonged heat wave'
We'll still have highs topping out in the low 90s with high humidity once again. - Southern-style heat is expected this weekend. Friday , the high was 96 degrees at 2:50 p.m. - one degree shy of the 1954 record of 97 degrees for the hottest June 29.

In August, the Justice Department moved to reallocate resources in an effort to sue colleges and universities over affirmative action policies.

The Justice Department under Trump has been investigating a complaint by more than 60 Asian-American organisations that say Harvard University's policies are discriminatory because they limit the acceptance of Asian-Americans.

AB: The law has not changed.

"Yet again we see that this administration's goal and vision for "Making America Great Again" is to reduce the role of the state in making sure our society prizes diversity and inclusion", Richmond said in a statement. However, the action does suggest that the federal government will be more willing to investigate complaints by applicants that they were denied entrance to a particular college due to their race, experts said. But she said it will have no impact on laws that govern school integration and admissions, nor will it affect the hundreds of schools under desegregation orders. They concluded that the Supreme Court "has made clear such steps can include taking account of the race of individual students in a narrowly tailored manner."...

As they withdrew the Obama-era statements, Trump officials said the federal government should not go beyond what judges have allowed. I would not be surprised if we see them try to get, whether it be the Harvard case or any case before the court, to try and have a reversal of course.

This interview has been edited and condensed for clarity.

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