Following days of student protests after a video surfaced online showing a white woman using racial slurs against a black student, University of Colorado Boulder administration says it has met with CU’s Black Student Alliance (BSA) and begun discussions around racial reform on campus.
On Wednesday afternoon, CU Chancellor Philip DiStefano, Chief Operating Officer Kelly Fox and Provost Russell Moore, along with other administrators, met with members of BSA to discuss the group’s list of five demands for the university. DiStefano received backlash during his State of the Campus address Tuesday when hundreds of students walked out, criticizing the chancellor for spending too little time addressing the incident.
“We had a productive meeting and reached agreement on a path forward,” DiStefano said Wednesday in a CU Boulder Today article.
The woman in the video, 33-year-old Rebekah Krajacic, is not affiliated with the university and has been linked to other incidents of racial harassment on campus in the past. She is currently being sought by campus police.
Administrators agreed Wednesday to immediately collaborate with students to post fliers of Krajacic in campus buildings and, if apprehended, exclude her from campus.
BSA said on Twitter that administrators also agreed to begin conversations with CU’s Office of Institutional Equity and Compliance to “ensure that information surrounding incidents of racism are reported in a timely manner.” BSA said that DiStefano has agreed to be held accountable. BSA also intends to work with student-led organizations across all four campuses to hold CU President Mark Kennedy accountable. Kennedy has not released a public statement on the incident since his initial tweet on Sunday.
Students and administrators agreed to further address racism on campus by developing a compact “aimed at restructuring campus policies that impact communities of protected classes.” In addition to reforming reporting procedures, future meetings are set to be held between campus administration and student leaders to “create a framework for implementing equitable policies and protections for all students.”
“Other issues such as enhancing cultural competency of staff, faculty and fellow students will take longer to address, and I am committed to working with students on our campus to increase awareness and achieve lasting behavioral change,” DiStefano said.
“In the last four days, we have strengthened our resolve and channeled our anger into institutional reform,” BSA said on its Twitter. “To our community, it is imperative that we remember those voices who are silenced and whose identities are not represented, and develop frameworks around true equity and inclusion.”
Contact CU Independent Senior News Editor Anna Haynes at firstname.lastname@example.org.