AUSG President Taylor Dumpson issued the following statement on Monday, May 1, 2017 in response to a racist incident on the American University campus.
Being first isn’t easy.
Early this morning, the Department of Public Safety was notified of a race-related incident targeted towards American University members of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc., the first predominately black greek lettered sorority in the United States.
It is disheartening and immensely frustrating that we are still dealing with this issue after recent conversations, dialogues, and town halls surrounding race relations on campus. But this is exactly why we need to do more than just have conversations but move in a direction towards more tangible solutions to prevent incidents like these from occurring in the future.
As the first black woman AUSG president, I implore all of us to unite in solidarity with those impacted by this situation and we must remember that “if there is no struggle, there is no progress” – Frederick Douglass. We must use this time to reflect on what we value as a community and we must show those in the community that bigotry, hate, and racism cannot and will not be tolerated.
This is not what I imagined my first letter to you all would be. In my first message to the student body, I would have wanted to talk about accountability, transparency, accessibility, and inclusivity. Now more than ever, we need to make sure that members of our community feel welcomed and above all, safe on this campus.
Earlier this year, the University updated the Student Code of Conduct to outline identity-motivated bias and the sanctioning process for such incidents. As the new AUSG president, I encourage the University to work to ensure that those responsible for these despicable acts are brought to justice.
Throughout this process, I will remain as transparent as possible. As with all incidents involving the conduct process, the details of any proceedings will remain largely confidential. As I receive any updates, I will share as much as possible with the student body.
This will not be tolerated now, or ever, on the campus of American University and I will do everything in my ability to ensure that this never happens again.