GENESEO – SUNY Geneseo President Denise Battles stated that she is outraged by the letters ‘KKK’ found on the campus gazebo and other graffiti discovered on a residence hall Wednesday morning.
This latest graffiti comes after someone spraypainted a swastika and the word ‘Trump’ inside a residence hall. Investigations are continuing by University Police in collaboration with the New York State Police and the New York State Division of Human Rights into the ‘KKK’ graffiti on the gazebo and other ‘offensive graffiti’ found on the exterior of Nassau Hall.
In both instances, the graffiti has been removed.
After the swastika investigation began, Battles called the campus community together for an emergency meeting to ‘reaffirm college values’ on Nov. 16.
Battles’ statement is as follows:
“To the Campus Community,
‘I write to inform you that we once again have discovered deeply offensive graffiti on campus reflecting a hateful message completely counter to the values and welcoming environment of our inclusive community.
‘University Police in collaboration with the New York State Police and the New York State Division of Human Rights are investigating the letters KKK found on the gazebo and another possible case of offensive graffiti found on the exterior of Nassau Hall. The graffiti has since been removed. I ask anyone with knowledge of those involved in this or other bias-related acts to contact University Police at 585-245-5222 or 585-245-5651. We also have a silent witness option that can be used to anonymously report information useful to the investigation.
‘I am, in a word, outraged at these unlawful and reprehensible acts that continue to violate our inclusive community, and I condemn them utterly. Let me unequivocally state that the College stands in solidarity against these acts.
‘The incidents come at a time of heightened tension nationally, which is being reflected on college and university campuses. In response, we at Geneseo recently came together in a campus convening to reaffirm our commitment to our institutional value of inclusivity and our opposition to racism and bigotry. The campus is actively planning educational programming that will continue to affirm our commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion and provide opportunities for dialogue. An announcement about that programming is forthcoming. That said, building community takes a commitment by each and every one of us on a daily basis, and I urge everyone to respectfully engage with each other in constructive conversation on these issues.
‘In the past few weeks I have heard from many students, faculty, staff and alumni reaffirming their support for a diverse, inclusive and compassionate Geneseo. I intend to honor them with my continued vigilant commitment to the positive values that are at the heart of the Geneseo experience.
‘Our diversity gives us strength, and we will continue to strongly advocate for these treasured values in ensuring our campus remains an inviting and safe learning environment for all who study, work and visit here.”