As we begin another academic year of promise and challenges, our campus community unfortunately experienced another incident of hate, this time directed at our Arab/Muslim community. The Third World Mural at the Memorial Union was defaced sometime on Sept. 29. This mural is made up of many images depicting the voices of many people of color on our campus. The Palestinian flag, rendered in the shape of a dove in the mural, was painted over with a Star of David.
The UC Davis community prides itself in living our Principles of Community, where freedom of expression is both valued and respected. We will not allow these assaults against our community to go unchallenged. As a part of the UC Office of the President’s new Hate and Bias Reporting System, each campus has designated two officials to serve as point of contact, and to take the lead in follow-up actions regarding these types of incidents. At UC Davis, Associate Executive Vice Chancellor for Campus Community Relations Rahim Reed and Assistant Vice Chancellor for Student Life Griselda Castro serve in this capacity. Additionally, the Campus Council on Community and Diversity (CCC&D) has developed an action plan for the campus to coordinate our response to incidents of hate and bias. One of the steps in our action plan is to take swift action to remove any symbols of hate or defacement on our campus.
We will meet with representatives of the student community soon to discuss the follow-up action steps to this specific incident. We will also present the CCC&D’s Campus Action Plan, which includes our Hate-Free Campus Initiative, to the UC Davis campus community during the Student Activities Faire scheduled for Oct. 13 on the Quad. We ask that you join us in confronting acts of hate and bias on our campus by assuming some level of responsibility in promoting, supporting, advocating, engaging and respecting our Principles of Community.
Associate Executive Vice Chancellor
Assistant Vice Chancellor