11/13/15 Purdue Solidarity Rally, Jasmine Edison

Jasmine Edison, a student in the College of Liberal Arts, tells of times she's been discriminated against, speaking on Friday at the #HowManyMoreFires Rally near the Class of '50 Lecture Hall.

Several hundred students and faculty members were present in Friday's rally to show support for the University of Missouri and to voice their own concerns of racism at Purdue.

Those rallying held signs and chanted phrases like, "Hey, hey, ho, ho, racism has got to go," "Hell no, we won't go," "Where's Mitch?" and "Mitch, let's face it. It's time to deal with the racists."

A list of demands was announced created by students at Wednesday night's emergency meeting. The demands are as follows:

  1. We demand that administrators, specifically President Mitch Daniels, acknowledge the hostile environment caused by hateful and ignorant discrimination on Purdue’s campus. We also demand that he apologize for his erasure of the experiences of students of color in his email to the student body, where he asserted that Purdue is in “proud contrast to the environments that appear to prevail at places like Missouri or Yale.”

  2. We demand that Chief Diversity Officer be reinstated as its own position, with student involvement in the hiring process. Additionally, we demand supporting positions be instated for this role. The positions must address diversity and inclusion of faculty, staff, and students separately, in order to address the unique needs of each group.

  3. We demand that Purdue create and enforce a required comprehensive racial awareness curriculum for all students, staff, faculty, administration, and police. This curriculum must be vetted and overseen by a board of diverse students, faculty, and staff.

  4. We demand the release of a statistical report, using defined metrics, of the concrete impact of diversity and inclusion initiatives implemented on campus.

  5. We demand that the university more actively and effectively advertise and utilize the Report Hate & Bias program.

  6. We demand that the free speech policy be revised to address hate speech in person and through social media. We demand the university to follow harassment policies consistently to protect students from hostility.

  7. We demand that the university and the Purdue Police follow through with their commitment to form a police advisory board, which will be made up of diverse students, faculty, staff by the end of this fall semester.

  8. We demand that there be enforced extensive background checks relating to sexual offense, hate group membership, and discriminatory offenses of all faculty, staff, and police officers.

  9. We demand that there be a 20 percent increase of underrepresented minority faculty and staff by the 2019-2020 school year.

  10. We demand that there be a 30 percent increase of underrepresented minority students by the 2019-2020 school year.

  11. We demand that more merit and need based aid be given to students.

  12. We demand that under represented faculty and staff receive more resources, funding and support.

  13. We demand that Purdue Student Government and Purdue Graduate Student Government instate C.O.R.E. seats in their representative voting bodies.

Rumors of the presence of counter protestors flurried around campus, but none were seen present during Friday's rally.

Several students took turns by stepping on the benches surrounding the painted tree in front of the Class of 1950 Lecture Hall and expressed their accounts of racism on campus, their frustrations towards the University and performing spoken-word poetry on the topic of racial injustice.

For more on this, pick up a copy of Monday's printed edition.

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