Message from the president

September 18, 2020

A message from Binghamton University President Harvey Stenger and Vice President for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Karen Jones

To the Campus Community,

This has been a summer of tumult and disruption, with the COVID-19 pandemic and concerns about social injustice dominating headlines both nationally and locally.

Unfortunately, social injustice and racist issues are all too real for members of our own campus community, particularly our African American, Asian and Asian American students, faculty and staff. We have experienced an increase of anti-Asian and other racist sentiment since the start of the pandemic, and it has only increased since the killing of George Floyd and others. Members of our campus community also have been subjected to hate-filled Zoom bombing due to their ethnicity, study of religious beliefs or gender.

As a campus community, we will continue to express our support and condemn these racist, xenophobic and sexist words and actions directed against members of our community. Language that tries to blame, dehumanize or demean anyone based on their race, identity or sexual orientation is ignorant and abhorrent. This language is reprehensible and not welcomed here.

For those who have been subjected to any of these attacks, whether verbal or physical, we offer the following resources and hope you will take advantage of them by making a report or seeking assistance to help you better navigate through these unfortunate circumstances:
• Division of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion: or 607-777-6009
• Office of Student Conduct: or 607-777-6210
• CARE Team: or 607-777-2804
• Dean of Students: or 607-777-2804
• University Counseling Center: or 607-777-2772
• Employee Assistance Program: or 607-777-6655
• Title IX officer: or 607-777-2486
• University Ombudsman: or 607-777-2388
• University Police: or 607-777-2393
• Tips for avoiding Zoom bombing: and

Binghamton University holds diversity, inclusion and the safety of everyone in our campus community among our highest institutional values; it is who we are and what we value. As a community, we stand firm on the ideals that a diverse campus community is the cornerstone of a broad education and free scholarly inquiry, because it encourages new perspectives and bold answers. All members of our campus community are valued and we appreciate the many contributions they make for we are all the better for it, as is the world in which we live.

We have demonstrated our commitment to diversity and inclusion through a number of initiatives, including an increase in our scholarship funding for underrepresented minority students; we initiated the Common Read (Just Mercy) and film (13th) for our incoming first-year students as well as the Inclusive Pedagogy workshops for our new faculty. But more than these, we have available to us many workshops through our UDiversity Educational Institute to address bias and microaggressions, our library is creating the anti-racist resource guide, we also have the Electronic and Information Technology Accessibility Policy ensuring web and electronic accessibility across campus and we are now establishing a Campus Citizen Review Board to review the policies, procedures, actions and resources of our University Police Department.

Additionally, each college and operational unit has a diversity representative or committee to examine ways to further support students, faculty and staff. While each area has different expectations for the diversity function, what is crucial for all is to ensure a welcoming and supportive community for everyone.

We are also committed to addressing issues of sexual assault and harassment through a 12-action process including establishing a Title IX Council, hiring a new sexual violence counselor to work specifically with survivors, adding staff to investigate allegations of sexual assault, assigning two of our existing counselors to also work specifically with survivors of sexual assault. (see - Actions to be taken to address sexual assault policies at Binghamton University)

While we recognize much work remains to be done to combat xenophobic, racist behavior and sexual violence perpetrated against any member of our campus community, we will continue to work to make our campus a place where all people  of all backgrounds, representations and ethnicities  are safe, welcome and given opportunities to meet their full potential.

Harvey G. Stenger

Karen A. Jones
Vice President for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

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