Policy Changes at Gonzaga University to Bring an End to Hate Crimes

Policy Changes at Gonzaga University to Bring an End to Hate Crimes

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Carolyn Premo started this petition to Gonzaga University

This year alone there have been several instances of hate crimes at Gonzaga University and therefore we demand concrete policy changes in order to make an end to these blatant acts of racism. For example, there was an exhibit created in order to honor the victims of police brutality, which someone destroyed. Allegedly, the administration discovered who had committed this heinous crime and reframed from any amount of punishment. White supremacists also infiltrated a Black Student Union meeting by screaming racial slurs and making violent threats. Gonzaga currently has a BIAS team, but this team has been proven ineffective time and time again. We demand Gonzaga create and enforce an effective protocol to punish perpetrators of hate speech. After establishing an effective deterrent, these instances of racism should significantly decrease. Gonzaga's faculty is 86.5% white and although the statistics are not public, we theorize the administration is even less diverse than this. Gonzaga must diversify their faculty and especially their administration, as they are responsible for dealing with the aftermath. Gonzaga must also create a position in which their primary responsibility is to deal with instances of hate speech and racism at Gonzaga. Following the Black Student Union meeting, Gonzaga placed the burden on how the school should respond to the Black Student Union. Students of color who have just experienced a hate crime should not be forced to deal with the aftermath of the situation. Lastly, Gonzaga must alter their curriculum in order to prevent hate crimes from occurring. Currently, the core has a social justice requirement. However, there should be required classes about Black history and oppression in America. Education is the primary way to prevent hate crimes from occurring. Therefore, as a higher education institution, Gonzaga has an obligation to utilize its resources in order to educate the student body on the history and oppression of Black people in America. Gonzaga claims to prioritize social justice and creating a diverse and inclusive environment, however, their past actions speak differently. We as a student body feel we have an obligation to use our voice in order to bring an end to these hate crimes. 

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