An event exclusive to black queer, trans, and intersex students, staff, and faculty at the publicly-funded Claremont University Consortium has changed their event to include “allies” of these groups. The switch appears to be after a student newspaper questioned whether the previously closed event violated federal laws on discrimination.
The Queer Resource Center (QRC) funded by the Consortium — which includes liberal art colleges Pomona, Harvey Mudd, Claremont McKenna, Pitzer, and Scripps — is hosting a “BlaQ Mixer” event Feb. 6 that had only permitted attendance by “black queer, trans, & intersex students, staff, and faculty.”(RELATED: Here’s The Only College To Fully Embrace Free Speech)
Possibly contributing to the decision to change the event is an email sent to the student body by the Associated Students of Claremont McKenna College, which encouraged the entire student body to participate in events that celebrate Black History Month. This was complicated by the events, such as the BlaQ Mixer, being exclusive.
Following the Feb. 3 report from the Claremont Independent, which questioned whether the event violated Title VI — a statute that prohibits schools that receive federal funding from discriminating on the basis of race — the QRC changed the event to welcome “allies.” It also clarified that the event would instead “center” around black queer, trans, and intersex students and faculty.
— ClaremontIndependent (@claremontind) February 6, 2020
The Claremont Independent initially reported that according to a recruitment form for the position of director of the Queer Resource Center, the QRC has an annual operating budget of $350,000 and is college-run and operated, meaning it is subject to Title VI regulations since the Consortium received federal funding. According to the U.S. Department of Education, Title VI “prohibits discrimination based on race, color, or national origin in programs or activities receiving federal financial assistance.”
The Claremont Independent initially reported that according to a recruitment form for the position of director of the Queer Resource Center, the QRC has an annual operating budget of $350,000 and is college-run and operated. Since the Consortium receives federal funding, the QRC would also be subject to Title VI regulations.
If a federally-funded institution is in violation of Title VI, it could lose federal assistance, such as financial aid support.
The Claremont Independent also reported the QRC’s previous situation, which included false allegations that a transgender flag was stolen. Despite the realization that this had been a mistake, the group did not retract their report. In 2017, the director of the QRC was discovered to have made multiple anti-white remarks on Twitter, which resulted in the termination of the director.