UW-Madison student group gives university demands in response to racist video
MADISON, Wis. (WMTV) - University of Wisconsin-Madison students peacefully demonstrated on campus Wednesday in response to a video on social media of a student using racial slurs, and one student group is calling on the university to take action by giving the school a list of demands.
The group Blk Pwr Coalition handed the university a list of nine different items for the school to fulfill.
The demands include an immediate investigation into expelling the student and any other students seen or heard in the video. They also ask the university to recognize the video can create emotional distress for students of color and request the school give those students academic accommodations.
Additionally, the Coalition demands increased funding for safe spaces to help promote a healthy environment for students of color. This includes events promoting diversity, equity and inclusion along with educating students on the danger of racial violence.
With the list now in the university’s hands, students await its response.
“I’ve been here for four years and it seems just like a pattern that the university is not willing to take any sort of meaningful action,” UW-Madison student Aleah Malik said. “It needs to increase diversity, but also not just increase diversity, but make the conditions better for marginalized students on campus.”
Incoming UW-Madison students are required to enroll in a university program for violence prevention education and students only have to complete one part of the program. None of the three parts focus on the prevention of racial bias, and Coalition is looking for the university to change that.
UW-Madison officials provided NBC15 News with a written statement in response to the demonstration and addressed the demands.
“The university’s leaders are preparing a response,” the statement said. “Chancellor Mnookin, Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs Lori Reesor and Deputy Vice Chancellor and Chief Diversity Officer LaVar Charleston and Dean of Students Christina Olstad have all personally shared the same sentiments in recent days in their statements and directly in meetings with students.”
The statement did not say when the university plans to release its response.
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