Tensions About Race at U of Missouri Kansas City

February 15, 2016

The University of Missouri at Columbia was the site of protests in the fall over racist incidents and the view of many black students that their concerns were not taken seriously. An anonymous email sent to reporters Sunday morning said that the situation is also bad for black students and employees at the University of Missouri at Kansas City, where officials are alleged to have told students and employees that they were doing a much better job than those at Columbia. The letter details allegations such as a professor's use of a slur in the classroom, the discovery of a noose in a boiler room, a group of employees being shown a video that made fun of African-Americans and an incident in which someone suggested that the success of a black female employee was based in part on her ability to fry chicken.

The university released a statement Sunday. "The recent incidents involving UMKC staff cited in an anonymous letter either have been or are currently being investigated. Because these are personnel matters, it is unlikely that parties not involved would be aware of disciplinary actions taken," the statement said. It added, "UMKC has been working in recent years to create multiple avenues for faculty, staff and students to offer ideas on how to improve campus climate, and to tell us where we’re falling short."

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