A short while ago, someone wrote a hateful message on a flyer posted on a University bulletin board. The flyer was about a rally for undocumented students and the message was offensive and racist.
Unfortunately, as recent national events have shown, bigotry is still prevalent in American society. And at Roosevelt University, we clearly have work to do in order to inculcate in all who come here that intolerance has no place in our world. Roosevelt stands for diversity, openness, social justice and inclusion. Hate speech of any type will not be tolerated in any form as it is antithetical to Roosevelt’s message of social justice.
The offensive signs were removed and an investigation conducted. Although we were unable to determine who wrote the message, I want to use this opportunity to assure the entire University community that we will do everything we can so that Roosevelt will always be a place where people of all backgrounds are welcome and can feel safe.
One of the bright spots in this atrocious incident was the swift action of Roosevelt students. The Student Government Association passed a forceful resolution that said “hateful speech and writing should not be tolerated” as they “can have a detrimental effect on students of those groups no matter their race, religion, gender identity or sexual orientation.”
In addition, the Association of Latin American Studies organized an open meeting to discuss this incident and other episodes of discrimination on campus.
I want everyone to know that the Administration of Roosevelt University unequivocally endorses the SGA resolution, the full text of which is posted at www.facebook.com/RooseveltUniversitySGA. I applaud the efforts of our students to fight racism everywhere in society and pledge my full support and that of the University to this endeavor.
My hope is that this was an isolated incident. Nevertheless, one incident is one too many, and so we must always be vigilant.
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