AUSA have released a report outlining the state of intolerance and discrimination on university grounds.
The report is the result of a special hui held earlier this month in the university’s marae. The hui – given the name ‘Zero Tolerance’ – asked students and staff to speak up about instances of discrimination they’d been subjected to during their time at university. A reaction to the perceived uptick of white supremacist rhetoric on campus, the hui’s ultimate goal was to establish the depth and breadth of the university’s problem. Around 70 students and staff attended, many of whom shared stories of bigotry, inequity, and intolerance.*
The report, released on AUSA’s Facebook page late last week, details a number of key problems students touched on during the meeting. They include (but are not limited to):
The report finishes with a call to action. It asks the university’s Vice-Chancellor, Stuart McCutcheon, to implement two recommendations:
Following the release of the report, Vice-Chancellor Stuart McCutcheon immediately took steps towards fulfilling recommendation two, telling AUSA “[the university] does not condone any form of discrimination”. He also indicated he would be happy to move forward with the SWG, so long as some time was set aside to consider how best to implement it.
Craccum is hopeful the lessons learned from the events of this year will induce a real and lasting change on campus.
*To maintain privacy of those who shared their experiences, Craccum has chosen not to publish any.