A Note From the Student Advocacy Committee
The CAS Student Advocacy Committee was outraged to hear of the meal served in Downstein during Black History Month. While President Andrew Hamilton sent a note to the student body, he failed to apologize on behalf of NYU for the racially charged events which happened on our campus; instead, he chose to cite the apology Aramark issued as he considered it sufficient. The constant labor exercised by students, administration, and staff of color in not only bringing the meal to light but also disseminating accurate information reflects the larger problem NYU faces in concerns to race and its inability to take responsibility for the actions of entities we invite onto our campus. We denounce the racist actions of the two white Downstein staff and hope NYU decides not to renew its contract with Aramark. Aramark is known for its involvement with private prisons and profiting off the incarceration of people of color and low-income communities; Aramark has been involved in the perpetuation of food-borne illnesses in correctional facilities due to the low-quality of the foods it serves to people who are incarcerated. As an institution which profits off its “diversity” and “affordability” initiatives, NYU has a responsibility to end its contract with Aramark.
Furthermore, the swastikas in Lipton Hall were a disgusting act of hate, and while NYU and the NYPD are investigating, it marks a continuation of hateful acts of vandalism that NYU students use to intimidate their peers.
We implore the NYU administration to do more to listen to the needs of students of color, to act upon those needs in partnership with those students, and foster diversity and inclusion beyond brochure photos and emails.
Finally, we thank the Governance Council of Minority and Marginalized Students at NYU (GCOMMS) for their labor and persistence in bringing these issues to light and holding our administration accountable. We encourage CAS students to read their statement concerning Downstein here.
The CAS Student Advocacy Committee
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