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*BIAS RESPONSE TEAM LETTER*

	


	

*FEBRUARY 16, 2018*

	

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*Dear UVM Community,*

Yesterday, on February 15, 2018, we learned that two (2) 3x5 inch note 
cards were taped to the Mosaic Center for Students of Color (MCSC) 
display case window in the Davis Center Tunnel.  The note cards read, 
“White Privelaged [sic] And Proud of It” and “Innocent Lives Matter Not 
Guilty Ones”. The Bias Response Team has worked closely with UVM Police 
Services and currently we are unable to identify who posted the note 
cards on the display case.

While the messages on the cards may seem benign to some, and do not 
constitute a University policy violation, numerous students, staff, and 
faculty members have expressed tremendous hurt, frustration, and concern 
with seeing these messages on the MCSC display case. The note cards were 
placed in violation of the University's posting policy and were removed.

As a Bias Response Team, we want to be clear that we condemn these 
hurtful and exclusionary messages and we affirm everyone who is a part 
of our community. We recognize that we are living in a time where there 
is political and ideological unrest nationally and locally. We, too, are 
facing challenges with campus climate and people of color not feeling 
seen and valued.

WE get to determine the type of community we want to be. As the Bias 
Response Team, we stand in solidarity with our communities of color.

If you are reading this message, we hope YOU know that you belong and we 
need your help to make this a campus where everyone is seen, heard, 
valued and uplifted. If you feel you need immediate support, we 
encourage you to call Counseling and Psychiatry Services 
(CAPS)<https://www.uvm.edu/health/CAPS>for students or Invest 
EAP<http://www.uvm.edu/hrs/?Page=healthy/wellness.html>for employees.

To continue this dialogue in COMMUNITY, we are holding an optional 
Community Gathering on Tuesday, February 20, 2018 in the Silver Maple 
Ballroom from 4:30 - 6:30 pm. This space is open to all members of the 
UVM community and will be facilitated by Jilliene Johnson and Dennis 
DePaul from the Office of the Vice Provost and Dean of Students. During 
our time together, we will create a space to talk about the impact this 
incident has had on our community and share in a space to create 
messages that are affirming of our beliefs.

We ask that you continue to uplift our community and join us for deeper 
dialogue.

With care,

*UVM Bias Response Team*

Jilliene Johnson, Diversity, Engagement, and Professional Development 
Director  (Chair)
Tim Bilodeau, Sargent of UVM Police Services (Member)
Sarah Childs, Assistant Director of the Mosaic Center for Students of 
Color (Member)
Beverly Colston, Director of the Mosaic Center for Students of Color 
(Interim Member)
Sarah Helmer, Assistant Dean (Member)
Kim Martin, Director of Student Conduct (Member)
Joe Russell, Assistant Dean of Students for Retention (Member)
Kelli Perkins, Associate Director for Residential Education (Member)

	


	

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