Updated: Jul 21
Montana could join the list of states seeking to ban required "diversity training" by public employees.
Senate Bill 222 has been introduced by Sen. Jeremy Trebas of Great Falls. It would ban diversity, equity and inclusion training conducted by the state or any of its political subdivisions, including schools.
The bill language says:
It is an unlawful discriminatory practice for the state or any of its political subdivisions to subject an individual, as a condition of employment, to training, instruction, or any other required activity that espouses, promotes, advances, inculcates, or compels the individual to believe any of the following concepts:
(a) members of one class are morally superior to members of another class;
(b) an individual, by virtue of the individual's class, is inherently racist, sexist, or oppressive
(c) an individual's moral character or status as either privileged or oppressed is necessarily whether consciously or unconsciously;
(d) an individual, by virtue of the individual's class, bears responsibility for or should be determined by the individual's class;
(e) an individual, by virtue of the individual's class, should be discriminated against or receive
(f) an individual, by virtue of the individual's class, bears personal responsibility for and must feel adverse treatment to achieve diversity, equity, or inclusion;
(g) virtues such as merit, excellence, hard work, fairness, neutrality, objectivity, and racial guilt, anguish, or other forms of psychological distress because of actions, in which the individual played no part, committed in the past by other members of the same class; or another class.
SB 222 was heavily inspired by Florida’s “Stop WOKE” bill that took effect last summer.
The Montana bill is a simple policy that protects the constitutional rights of workers - both free speech rights and the right to not be forced into compelled speech.
The compelled speech doctrine sets out the principle that the government cannot force an individual or group to support certain expression.