UPDATED @ 5 p.m. - Report of a bias incident on campus
Please read statements from President Leo M. Lambert and Vice President for Student Life and Dean of Students, Smith Jackson.
STATEMENT FROM SMITH JACKSON, VICE PRESIDENT FOR STUDENT LIFE AND DEAN OF STUDENTS. 5 p.m., NOVEMBER 10, 2016
Dear students, faculty and staff,
I am writing with an update about the incident that took place on campus this morning. As President Lambert shared in an email to the Elon community, someone had written a message on a classroom white board targeting Latinos.
This afternoon a student stepped forward, took responsibility for writing the message and is deeply remorseful. The matter is being adjudicated through Elon’s Office of Student Conduct.
I want to reiterate President Lambert’s message in support of Elon’s strong values and treating each other with dignity and respect.
If you encounter an incident of bias, there are many ways to report it. Full information is at: https://www.elon.edu/e/campus-life/inclusion-diversity/bias-response/confidentiality.html
STATEMENT FROM PRESIDENT LEO M. LAMBERT, 1:15 p.m., NOVEMBER 10, 2016
Early this morning, an Elon faculty member found a message written on a corner of a classroom whiteboard that read “Bye bye Latinos hasta la vista.” The faculty member photographed the message, erased it and talked with the students about the message. He also filed a notice of the incident via the university’s bias response system. Since then, the photograph has been shared on social media and is receiving strong reaction.
I want to say emphatically that this incident is reprehensible and directly in conflict with Elon’s values of inclusion and treating each other with dignity and respect. Because this is a potential violation of Elon’s Code of Conduct, we will investigate the matter using our campus security camera system, attempt to determine who wrote the message and hold them accountable. Elon will not tolerate harassing, denigrating or intimidating actions that create a hostile environment.
It should be obvious to all that our nation is deeply divided at this time and we face great differences in our society. Now, more than ever, we need to show kindness and respect toward one another, especially to those members of our community who are feeling vulnerable.
I want to send a special message of support to our Hispanic/Latino students: Please know that this message does not represent our community. We stand with you and will do everything in our power to ensure your well-being, safety and security. We are committed to give every student the opportunity to feel welcome and valued, and to flourish and reach their full potential.