Last Monday a hate incident occurred at the Women’s Resources and Research Center (WRRC), prompting the center to report the incident to the University of California systemwide intolerance reporting system and the UC Davis Police Department.
A life-size woman figure that is used as an educational tool by the WRRC and the Association for Body Image and Disordered Eating (ABIDE) was hung by a noose to a water pipe in the WRRC.
“The intent of this act is unknown, but the impact is not; this was hurtful to many who saw it, conjures instances of gender violence and racism, and is another one of many incidents that leads UC Davis students and staff to feel unsafe on campus,” the WRRC staff said . “This is very disturbing and a strong reminder of the need for education about gender equality, sexism and the racist and historical significance of nooses. This act cannot be justified or minimized.”
The WRRC offers leadership and educational programs, support services, co-sponsorships and scholarships, and various other opportunities to the women of the UC Davis campus.
So far the center has been given support from students, alumni, faculty and staff and even a congressional office.
“Many of the e-mails and letters, declare their support for the mission of the WRRC and denounce the acts of hatred, violence against women, gender violence, and sexism that occur at UC Davis, including this most recent incident at the WRRC,” the WRRC staff said . “We encourage folks who would like to talk about this incident or any other incident that has occurred on campus to please stop by the WRRC.”
According to Sgt. Scheffield of the UC Davis Police Department the incident is not presently classified as a hate crime and is currently under investigation.
“All too often these incidents are minimized, thought to be nothing more than a joke or prank, but violence, sexism, racism, and homophobia, [among] other acts of oppression, are not funny. All of these incidents send messages about who is safe and welcome at UC Davis,” the WRRC staff said .
The WRRC is planning on issuing a statement to the community today and is holding a town hall meeting on Wednesday at 4 p.m. in the Student Community Center, Meeting Room D.
Anyone with any information on the incident is encouraged to contact the UC Davis Police Department at (530)752-1727.
MAX GARRITY RUSSER can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org