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Campus Pride bans Univ. of Minnesota-Duluth after firing of hockey coach Shannon Miller

Campus Pride says the University of Minnesota-Duluth will not be considered as an inclusive campus until it answers to questions of why lesbian hockey coach Shannon Miller was fired.

When the University of Minnesota-Duluth told its very successful women's hockey coach, Shannon Miller, that they were parting ways with her, suspicions of sexism and homophobia ran through the Internet.

The folks at Campus Pride took that very seriously, banning the school from consideration for one of its top inclusivity awards.

From a Campus Pride press release:

In mid-August of 2014, Campus Pride announced its list of the top-rated LGBTQ-friendly colleges and universities in the nation. For the second year in a row, the University of Minnesota Duluth (UMD) was on that list. The annual listing features campuses which score high on the Campus Pride Index for LGBTQ-inclusive policies, programs and practices. After consultation with the campus LGBTQ community, Campus Pride has decided to suspend UMD from consideration in this year's list of top-rated LGBTQ-friendly colleges and universities.

Campus Pride cited the dismissal of Shannon Miller, who is serving her 16th year as the UMD Women's Ice Hockey Head Coach, as well as the subsequent actions to let go her coaching staff who all happen to be gay or bisexual.

Athletic Director Josh Berlo had informed Miller that her contract, and those of her entire coaching staff, would not be renewed, citing budgetary restraints as the primary reason for her dismissal. Coach Miller was a former coach of Team Canada recruited by former UMD Chancellor Kathryn A. Martin to start UMD Women's Division I Ice Hockey program, and has become the most successful NCAA women's hockey coach in Frozen Four tournament wins (11) and NCAA Division I national championships (5). Canada's Globe and Mail quoted Miller on January 29th stating, "As a strong, successful woman who is also gay, I feel they had other reasons - I can't speculate on them, but I just know how I've been treated."

Screen Shot 2015-02-18 at 8.25.27 PMWhen informed about the suspension, Angela Nichols, 15-year founding Director of UMD's GLBT Services Office, said, "I'm not surprised."

Lesson to other colleges: When you fire successful LGBT coaches, there will be a consequence. Now the media is picking up on the story and running with it.