House Study Bill 258 - IntroducedA Bill ForAn Act 1providing for requirements related to racism or sexism
2trainings at, and diversity and inclusion efforts by, school
3districts and public postsecondary educational institutions.
4BE IT ENACTED BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF THE STATE OF IOWA:
1   Section 1.  NEW SECTION.  261H.7  Race and sex stereotyping —
2training by institution prohibited.
   31.  For purposes of this section, unless the context
4otherwise requires:
   5a.  “Divisive concepts” includes all of the following:
   6(1)  That one race or sex is inherently superior to another
7race or sex.
   8(2)  That the United States of America and the state of Iowa
9are fundamentally racist or sexist.
   10(3)  That an individual, by virtue of the individual’s race
11or sex, is inherently or systematically racist, sexist, or
12oppressive, whether consciously or unconsciously.
   13(4)  That an individual should be discriminated against
14or receive adverse treatment solely or partly because of the
15individual’s race or sex.
   16(5)  That members of one race or sex cannot and should not
17attempt to treat others without respect to race or sex.
   18(6)  That an individual’s moral character is necessarily
19determined by the individual’s race or sex.
   20(7)  That an individual, by virtue of the individual’s race
21or sex, bears responsibility for actions committed in the past
22by other members of the same race or sex.
   23(8)  That any individual should feel discomfort, guilt,
24anguish, or any other form of psychological distress on account
25of that individual’s race or sex.
   26(9)  That meritocracy or traits such as a hard work ethic
27are racist or sexist, or were created by a particular race to
28oppress another race.
   29(10)  Any other form of race or sex stereotyping or any other
30form of race or sex scapegoating.
   31b.  “Race or sex scapegoating” means assigning fault, blame,
32or bias to a race or sex, or to members of a race or sex
33because of their race or sex, or claiming that, consciously or
34unconsciously, and by virtue of persons’ race or sex, members
35of any race are inherently racist or are inherently inclined to
-1-1oppress others, or that members of a sex are inherently sexist
2or inclined to oppress others.
   3c.  “Race or sex stereotyping” means ascribing character
4traits, values, moral and ethical codes, privileges, status,
5or beliefs to a race or sex, or to an individual because of the
6individual’s race or sex.
   72.  Each public institution of higher education may continue
8training that fosters a workplace and learning environment that
9is respectful of all employees and students. However, the
10president, vice presidents, deans, and department directors of
11a public institution of higher education shall ensure that any
12mandatory staff or student training provided by an employee of
13the institution or by a contractor hired by the institution
14does not teach, advocate, act upon, or promote divisive
15concepts. This subsection shall not be construed as preventing
16an employee or contractor who provides mandatory training from
17responding to questions regarding divisive concepts raised by
18participants in the training.
   193.  Institution diversity and inclusion efforts shall
20discourage employees and students of the institution from
21discriminating against another by color, race, ethnicity, sex,
22political ideology, or any other characteristic protected under
23the federal Civil Rights Act of 1964, Pub.L. No.88-352, as
24amended, and applicable state law.
   254.  This section shall not be construed to do any of the
26following:
   27a.  Inhibit or violate the first amendment rights of students
28or faculty, or undermine a public institution of higher
29education’s duty to protect to the fullest degree intellectual
30freedom and free expression. The intellectual vitality of
31students and faculty shall not be infringed under this section.
   32b.  Prevent a public institution of higher education
33from promoting racial, cultural, ethnic, intellectual, or
34academic diversity or inclusiveness, provided such efforts are
35consistent with the provisions of this section.
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   1c.  Prohibit discussing divisive concepts as part of a larger
2course of academic instruction.
   3d.  Create any right or benefit, substantive or procedural,
4enforceable at law or in equity by any party against the state
5of Iowa, its departments, agencies, or entities, its officers,
6employees, or agents, or any other person.
7   Sec. 2.  NEW SECTION.  279.74  Race and sex stereotyping —
8training prohibited.
   91.  For purposes of this section, unless the context
10otherwise requires:
   11a.  “Divisive concepts” means the same as defined in section
12261H.7.
   13b.  “Race or sex scapegoating” means the same as defined in
14section 261H.7.
   15c.  “Race or sex stereotyping” means the same as defined in
16section 261H.7.
   172.  Each school district may continue training that fosters
18a workplace and learning environment that is respectful of
19all employees and students. However, the superintendent of
20each school district shall ensure that any curriculum or
21mandatory staff or student training provided by an employee
22of the school district or by a contractor hired by the school
23district does not teach, advocate, act upon, or promote
24divisive concepts. This subsection shall not be construed as
25preventing an employee or contractor who teaches any curriculum
26or who provides mandatory training from responding to questions
27regarding divisive concepts raised by participants in the
28training.
   293.  School district diversity and inclusion efforts shall
30discourage employees and students of the school district from
31discriminating against another by color, race, ethnicity, sex,
32political ideology, or any other characteristic protected under
33the federal Civil Rights Act of 1964, Pub.L. No.88-352, as
34amended, and applicable state law.
   354.  This section shall not be construed to do any of the
-3-1following:
   2a.  Inhibit or violate the first amendment rights of students
3or faculty, or undermine a school district’s duty to protect to
4the fullest degree intellectual freedom and free expression.
5The intellectual vitality of students and faculty shall not be
6infringed under this section.
   7b.  Prevent a school district from promoting racial,
8cultural, ethnic, intellectual, or academic diversity or
9inclusiveness, provided such efforts are consistent with the
10provisions of this section.
   11c.  Prohibit discussing divisive concepts as part of a larger
12course of academic instruction.
   13d.  Create any right or benefit, substantive or procedural,
14enforceable at law or in equity by any party against the state
15of Iowa, its departments, agencies, or entities, its officers,
16employees, or agents, or any other person.
17   Sec. 3.  IMPLEMENTATION OF ACT.  Section 25B.2, subsection
183, shall not apply to this Act.
19EXPLANATION
20The inclusion of this explanation does not constitute agreement with
21the explanation’s substance by the members of the general assembly.
   22This bill provides requirements related to racism or
23sexism trainings, and to diversity and inclusion efforts, at
24or by school districts and public postsecondary educational
25institutions.
   26Each school district and each public institution of higher
27learning may continue all training that fosters a workplace
28that is respectful of all employees and students, but the
29superintendent of the school district or the president of the
30institution must ensure that any mandatory staff or student
31training provided by an employee of the school district or the
32institution or by a contractor hired by the school district or
33the institution does not teach, advocate, act upon, or promote
34divisive concepts, which the bill defines to include that
35one race or sex is inherently superior to another; that Iowa
-4-1or the United States is fundamentally racist or sexist; that
2an individual, by virtue of the individual’s race or sex, is
3inherently or systematically racist, sexist, or oppressive;
4that an individual should be discriminated against or receive
5adverse treatment solely or partly because of his or her race
6or sex; that members of one race or sex cannot and should not
7attempt to treat others without respect to race or sex; that an
8individual’s moral character is necessarily determined by his
9or her race or sex; that an individual bears responsibility for
10actions committed in the past by other members of the same race
11or sex; that any individual should feel psychological distress
12on account of that individual’s race or sex; that meritocracy
13or traits such as a hard work ethic are racist or sexist, or
14were created by a particular race to oppress another race; and
15any other form of race or sex stereotyping or any other form of
16race or sex scapegoating.
   17The bill defines ”race or sex scapegoating” as assigning
18fault, blame, or bias to a race or sex; or to members of a
19race or sex because of their race or sex; or claiming that,
20consciously or unconsciously, and by virtue of persons’ race
21or sex, members of any race are inherently racist or are
22inherently inclined to oppress others, or that members of a
23sex are inherently sexist or inclined to oppress others; and
24defines “race or sex stereotyping” as ascribing character
25traits, values, moral and ethical codes, privileges, status,
26or beliefs to a race or sex, or to an individual because of the
27individual’s race or sex.
   28Institution diversity and inclusion efforts must discourage
29employees and students of the school district or institution
30from discriminating against another by color, race, ethnicity,
31sex, political ideology, or any other characteristic protected
32under the federal Civil Rights Act of 1964 or applicable state
33law.
   34Nothing in the bill shall be construed to inhibit or violate
35the first amendment rights of students or faculty or undermine
-5-1the institution’s or school district’s duty to protect
2intellectual freedom and free expression; prevent a school
3district or public postsecondary institution from promoting
4racial, cultural, ethnic, intellectual, or academic diversity
5or inclusiveness; to prohibit discussing divisive concepts as
6part of a larger course of academic instruction; or to create
7any right or benefit, substantive or procedural, enforceable
8at law or in equity by any party against the state of Iowa, its
9departments, agencies, or entities, its officers, employees,
10or agents, or any other person.
   11The bill may include a state mandate as defined in Code
12section 25B.3. The bill makes inapplicable Code section 25B.2,
13subsection 3, which would relieve a political subdivision from
14complying with a state mandate if funding for the cost of
15the state mandate is not provided or specified. Therefore,
16political subdivisions are required to comply with any state
17mandate included in the bill.
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