Protests At UC Santa Cruz

Jenny Brotherton, Staff writer

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On Tuesday May 2, the African/Black Student Alliance at UC Santa Cruz organized a protest on campus demanding racial equality and recognition. The protest lasted until Thursday May 4th. Students locked themselves in Kerr Hall, an administration building on campus, for three days and refused to leave until they had their demands met.

Also found on The UC Santa Cruz Afrikan Black Coalition website, their demands included the following : *nothing has been changed from their website, including dates*

1.) Similar to EOP students and International students’ housing guarantees, we demand that ALL African Black Caribbean identified students have a 4-year housing guarantee to live in the Rosa Parks African American Themed House. Guaranteeing this would provide a viable living option to all ABC identified students regardless of housing status and college affiliation. We demand a written agreement by the opening of housing applications in April 2017.

2.) We demand the university remove the beds and release the Rosa Parks African Themed House lounge so it can serve its original purpose. We demand the lounge be returned by Fall 2017.

3.) We demand that the university fund the ENTIRE exterior of the Rosa Parks African American Themed House being  painted Pan-Afrikan colors (Red, green, and black) by the start of Spring quarter 2017. These Pan Afrikan colors represent Black liberation, and represent our diaspora, and the goals of our people.

4.) We demand that all new incoming students from 2017-2018 school year forward (first years and transfers) go through a mandatory in-person diversity competency training in the event that the online module is not implemented by JUNE 2017.  We demand that the training be reviewed and approved by A/BSA board every-two-years. We demand that every incoming student complete this training by their first day of class.

The University started to take steps towards resolution. On the last day of the protest, George Blumenthal, chancellor and professor at Santa Cruz, met with the students to discuss their demands. Blumenthal ended up agreeing to all four, reported The Root, news website.  

The Los Angeles Times reported that the University made a statement after the protest, stating “We strongly condemn this form of public protest and will exert our full responsibility as campus leaders to discourage its use in the future.”

According to Fox News, Imari Reynolds, a member of the A/BSA, told their reporter, “Black students are on this campus. We do exist and we do pay to go here, just like our counterparts and we do deserve to be seen here on this campus.”

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