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Bias policy in its one-year pilot phase

October 14, 2016 at 9:17 am
By Cecil Youngblood

In the spring of 2015, members of the Beloit College community were targets of a hate crime, committed by a still unknown individual or group who spray painted one of the brick walls of Whitney Hall with racist, threatening hate speech. After more than a year of campus wide discussion and deliberation, the college has created an Anti-Hate Act / Biased Incident policy that is aimed at improving our college’s response to events that threaten to demean and oppress members of our campus community.

This policy is designed to trigger immediate and effective responses from clearly designated lead responders trained in restorative justice and conflict resolution. Any student(s), faculty, or staff member(s) who reports a hate crime, hate act, or bias incident will have their concerns heard and receive support. The response team will help coordinate appropriate communication with the campus community and, when possible, mediate interpersonal conflicts.

An individual or group who feels they have been subjected to a bias incident/ hate act is encouraged to file a report by using an online form.These reports will be sent immediately and only to the college’s lead responders: Title IX Coordinator Cecil Youngblood and Associate Professor of Sociology Kate Linnenberg.

The lead responders will access each claim, apply the policy,and determine how each situation should be addressed. Links to the policy and online reporting form can be found on the websites of the Provost (under “campus governance”), the Office for Inclusive Living and Learning, and the Office for Academic Diversity and Inclusion.

Endorsed by Academic Senate and shared throughout campus in May 2016, the Anti-Hate Act and Bias Incident policy is now in a one-year pilot phase to be reviewed and revised in fall 2017.

In order to assess problem areas and realize improvements over time, summaries of incidents and their frequency will be compiled and made publicly available each semester. Please contact Cecil at youngblc@beloit.edu and/or Kate at linnenbe@beloit.edu with questions or thoughts about this pilot phase of the Anti-Hate Act / Biased Incident Policy.