Clackamas County in Oregon Dismantles Office Of Equity, Diversity, And Inclusion
CLACKAMAS COUNTY, Ore. — Clackamas County Commissioner Ben West announced the Office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) will be dismantled after officials voted to cut its bloated $828,000 budget. He confirmed that the DEI department has no more staff and indicated that its website will officially come down in February.
West indicated that “(he)won’t let this county have an ideology that tells anyone else that because of their immutable trait, that they are a victim.” A leading voice in the successful move to dismantle the department, West has an adopted black son and became notable when he fought for same-sex marriage rights in the state. As the war against anti-white so-called racist initiatives takes hold through diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) gains momentum, Americans have become enraged, rebelling against policies labeled as progressive that they believe do more harm than good.
On X(formerly known as Twitter) Andy Ngô commented that Clackamas County is much more moderate compared to Portland. Many watched in horror as Portland descended into regular Antifa rioting, homicides, and shootings on the streets since 2020. Clackamas County is one of the three counties that make up the greater Portland area.
Last year, County Commissioner Mark Shull proposed cutting the extravagant DEI budget, resulting in extreme backlash from the far-left population in Oregon. Given that Clackamas County is more moderate than neighboring Multnomah County- which includes the city of Portland, officials were able to successful in axing the department which had been established in July 2020, weeks after the death of George Floyd. According to Axios, the initiatives were a continuation of the 2004 series of resolutions that support diversity, inclusion, and equity.
Shull argued during last year’s meeting that Clackamas County had “operated just fine” despite not having an equality office for decades. He thought that the office was fomenting friction, and was an unnecessary expense. West believes that Clackamas can now better serve its constituents, regardless of their immutable characteristics. He considers Clackamas’ DEI work to have been divisive, heavily influenced by a radical ideological worldview that- instead of measuring fairness on equality of opportunity, it measured fairness on the equality of outcomes.
Dissenting, commissioner Paul Savas argued against the budget cut saying, “Everyone needs to feel that they belong.” President of the Milwaukie City Council in Clackamas County- Desi Nicodemus, said that cutting the office would end up making a whole community in Clackamas County feel unsafe.
DEI policies have been capturing the attention of prominent outspoken billionaire businessmen like Bill Ackman and Elon Musk over the last few months as the backlash is increasing antisemitism allegations on college campuses. Musk recently said, after reports showed that airlines are prioritizing diversity over safety, that “people will die due to DEI.”
Attempting to rebrand diversity, equity, and inclusion policies, employers are distancing themselves from the controversial progressive scheme. It seems likely that it will be increasingly difficult for employers to meet the DEI quota as the attacks on these policies escalate. Despite setting out to increase diversity, the policy often simply resulted in the selective employment of minorities or specific demographics, which led to the automatic exclusion of white people. As a result, some people have labeled DEI as reverse racism.
West confirmed in a statement that he believed that Clackamas County has shown moral clarity and leadership by dismantling its DEI department. Promoting classical liberal and American values, with good government over ideology Clackamas promotes and hires based on merit and competency- not incessantly focusing on a person’s immutable traits.