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UConn students rally and march against racism

STORRS — Students expressed their outrage Monday at what they call UConn’s inadequate response following an incident of racism on campus.

They held a rally and march attended by hundreds. On Monday at 8 p.m., UConn’s NAACP will hold a town hall. Students vow to keep up this fight even once the cameras go away.

Hundreds of UConn students of all creeds and colors marched from the student union to the center of the school seal to oppose racism in all forms. UConn student Xela Laird said, “Since this is predominantly white university there is blanket racism all the time and everywhere in the fraternities, but they won’t say it to us directly.”

The catalyst was a viral video showing three men walking through the parking lot of of the Charter Oak Apartments yelling the ‘N’ word.

UConn Senior Brittany Nunes said, “We’re tired of it. I love this school but it comes down to the fact that the school is not as diverse as they like to say.”

The rally drew the attendance of the area state Representative Gregg Haddad and State Senator Mae Flexer who had a message for white people.

“They can’t just say to their black and brown friends yeah that’s terrible. No, they need to step up and challenge their white peers,” said Flexer.

FOX61 learned that as a result of the incident, UConn President Thomas Katsouleas sent this letter to the campus launching a search for a Chief Diversity Officer.

Not good enough say students.

UConn Junior Siara Maldonado said, “I think that the University really isn’t doing much but sending emails to make us feel better, which is why we had to take measures into our own hands.”

A professor claimed he’s trying to pass the blame.

“When it comes to speaking out against racism on campus, you must be the universities chief anti racism boss.” President Katlouleas himself grabbed the bullhorn and made brief remarks saying he was there to listen. “If you are not for equality and respect than I am not for you,” he said.

President Katsouleas said he plans to hold his office hours inside the cultural and diversity centers on campus to communicate one on one with students.

Campus Police are using door swipe and WiFi data to try and determine who is in the video.

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