We are outraged by this week’s federal ruling to uphold HB 7, also known as the Stop the Wrongs to Our Kids and Employees (WOKE) Act. Now set to take effect on July 1, 2022, this legislation will limit discussions on racism in Florida schools and workplaces by prohibiting any training that makes an individual uncomfortable in any way.
HB 7 will impose severe penalties on educators, equity trainers and businesses in Florida. This legislation will silence needed conversations about our nation’s history and hinder the efforts of those working to address historic and present day racism. Part of a nationwide campaign to smear Critical Race Theory, the Stop WOKE Act has been criticized by legal experts across the political spectrum, who have said the law flouts well-established Supreme Court precedent and sets a dangerous path for further erosion of freedom of speech. Furthermore, this decision to allow HB 7 to take effect is especially devastating amidst a week of Supreme Court rulings turning back progress on important issues of equity and justice, including the reversal of Roe v. Wade.