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Syracuse Rescinds Protester Suspensions

February 20, 2020

Syracuse University will lift the interim suspensions it placed on more than 30 students participating in a sit-in and allow the 23 remaining students to stay after hours in the administrative building where they are demonstrating, Chancellor Kent Syverud announced during a Faculty Senate meeting on Feb. 19.

The university negotiated with students in Crouse-Hinds Hall throughout the day on Tuesday, offering to lift the suspensions for violating a campus disruption policy if the students left the building by 10 p.m., according to a statement from Rob Hradsky, vice president for student engagement. The students rejected this offer, Hradsky’s statement said.

Syverud said that while the students in Crouse-Hinds Hall have been disruptive, he has “used every ounce of my discretion under the non-disruption policy to accommodate peaceful protest,” and will do so again. The Crouse-Hinds Hall sit-in is the second in three months students of color have staged to protest repeated incidents of racism on campus.

“We need to step back from that edge. I want to direct that first step back right now,” Syverud said. “My discretion is not unlimited. It is not unconstrained. It can’t continue forever. At some point, it is true that violation of the disruption policy has to have consequences that should be managed through the Code of Student Conduct. We are not at that point now. I believe we should give more time to this process.”


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