ACLU Letter to Secretary DeVos regarding funding for the Duke-UNC Consortium for Middle East Studies

Document Date: September 27, 2019

In this letter to Secretary DeVos, the ACLU expressed strong concern over the Department of Education’s review of Title VI funding for the Duke-UNC Consortium for Middle East Studies.

On September 17, the Department sent a letter that threatens to end the Consortium’s federal funding unless the Consortium submits plans to remake the Middle East studies program to the Department’s satisfaction. However, based on the Consortium’s response to the Department’s letter, it appears that all or most of these concerns are misguided or simply wrong. The apparent misinformation and inaccuracies in the Department’s letter are especially troubling because they strongly suggest that the Department’s action here is, in part at least, motivated by political reasons and are emblematic of a long pattern of anti-Muslim bigotry and discrimination into the Title VI funding process.

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