RALEIGH (August 3, 2022) – On July 25, the North Carolina Justice Center, the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, and pro bono counsel, Relman Colfax PLLC, filed a merits brief with the United State Supreme Court urging the court to uphold race-conscious admissions at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill. Following the merits brief, supporters representing a variety of sectors and stakeholder groups reiterated their support for race-conscious admissions by filing a series of historic amicus briefs.
Eighty-two corporations and business groups filed three amicus briefs in support, in addition to briefs from Governor Cooper and nine current and former southern state governors, universities, higher education groups, lawmakers, former military leaders, current and former basketball coaches and players, student groups, and bar associations. The briefs cited the benefits of a workforce educated in diverse settings, the importance of equitable education, the need to attract and retain a diverse and skilled workforce, and the ability of diverse groups to creatively solve problems.
The case, Student for Fair Admissions (SFFA) v. University of North Carolina, seeks to upend over 40 years of precedent permitting universities to flexibly consider race as one of many factors in admission. As the July 25 merits brief highlighted, “UNC’s holistic race-conscious admissions process is critical to ensuring all students learn in an atmosphere of well-rounded, talented students who represent a broad range of experiences and viewpoints.”
“The outpouring of support from organizations and individuals from North Carolina and across the United States demonstrates the importance of holistic, race-conscious admissions programs in promoting diversity across many different sectors of our society,” said Sarah Laws, Leslie J. Winner Public Interest and Civil Rights Fellow at the North Carolina Justice Center.
“In our increasingly interconnected world, diversity continues to benefit all of us.”