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Dear Student Affairs Community,

We have been following the violent events in Charlottesville with great concern. We denounce the white supremacists and neo-Nazis who made the campus of the University of Virginia a site for hate and intolerance. Free expression is essential to the educational mission of universities, but it does not include or protect actions that are meant to intimidate, harm, or threaten others. On behalf of the UC system, President Napolitano stated, “UC abhors the violence and hate displayed in Charlottesville that perverted Americans’ right to speak freely.”

On Monday a group of UCSB students, faculty, and staff gathered to stand in solidarity with the people of Charlottesville who resisted hate in their community. For those of you who were not at UCSB to gather with us, the events in Charlottesville are horrific enough that we did not want to miss the opportunity to make a public statement condemning the actions of the white supremacists who terrorized a campus and a community.

Our status as a highly ranked public research university reflects the contributions of UCSB students, faculty, and staff of different races, ethnicities, genders, faiths, sexual orientations, ages, socioeconomic backgrounds, abilities, and experiences. This diversity is one of our strongest assets. We encourage you to use the resources of this university, in classrooms and through research, to examine the pressing questions of our time regarding identity, equity, democracy, and rights. You can also learn more about UC policies relative to these issues (UC Principles Against Intolerance, Free Speech Policy, Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Policies).

The strength of the partnership between students, faculty, and staff at UCSB provides us with the solid foundation of a caring community when our core values of respect and inclusion are challenged. In the fall quarter, we plan to host an opportunity for dialogue on race and community, “Living Lives of Resilient Love in a Time of Hate”, on November 8 in Corwin Pavilion. More details will be forthcoming about this opportunity.

In the meantime, we hope you have a good rest of your summer. We look forward to welcoming you back.

Sincerely,
Hieu Le, President, Associated Students
Kristin Hsu, External Vice President of Statewide Affairs, Associated Students
Batsheva Labowe-Stoll, External Vice President for Local Affairs, Associated Students
Jasmine Sandhu, Internal Vice President, Associated Students
Margaret Klawunn, Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs