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Response to June 2023 Supreme Court Decisions

July 5, 2023

crowd protesting

Last week, the U.S. Supreme Court rendered several landmark decisions that have a profound impact on the issues of affirmative action, student loan forgiveness, and LGBTQIA+ rights. We are deeply concerned by these decisions as they represent a significant setback in our collective efforts to build a more diverse, equitable and inclusive society.

Affirmative action has been a critical tool in addressing historical injustices and promoting equitable opportunities for historically disinvested communities across the country. It recognizes that systemic barriers and intentional discrimination have hindered economic progress in low-income communities and communities of color and seeks to level the playing field by considering factors such as race, ethnicity, and gender in admissions and employment practices. By limiting the use of affirmative action, we risk compounding existing disparities and racial wealth gaps, and allowing for admissions and hiring to be skewed by subjectivity and bias. Similarly, the Court’s decisions regarding student loan forgiveness constitute another economic setback for more than 43 million people across the country. These rulings negatively impact opportunities for greater equity and socioeconomic mobility – values central to the work we carry out each day.

The Court’s rulings on LGBTQIA+ rights have far-reaching implications that threaten the rights and protections won by the LGBTQIA+ community over the last several decades. As we work towards creating a just society, it is imperative that we advocate for equal treatment and non-discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity. The progress made in advancing LGBTQIA+ rights should be celebrated and safeguarded to ensure a fair and equitable society for all.

At JVS, we firmly believe that diversity and inclusion are not only moral imperatives, but also essential drivers of innovation, creativity, and success. The Court’s decisions shape the fabric of our society, and our response must reflect a commitment to inclusivity and expanding equitable opportunity. While these decisions are disheartening, we remain steadfast in our pursuit of social justice and equity. We will continue to work tirelessly to ensure that every individual has a fair, and equitable, chance to achieve their dreams, regardless of their background or identity.