As members of the University of Tennessee community, the Student Counseling Center joins with so many others who have spoken out against acts of racism, hatred, bigotry, and intolerance. Our hearts are heavy. We wonder how one person or group can be so virulently against another person or group of people that they resort to such behavior. There is not a satisfactory answer to this question, especially if you have been targeted or you identify with a group that has been targeted.
But we can’t stop, and we won’t stop speaking out and making corrective action when we can. Here’s what you can do:
- If you have feel you have been a target of a bias motivated incident* report it here through the Dean of Students Office.
- If you witness a bias related incident on campus, call the UPD while the incident is happening, or report it through the LiveSafe app.
- Join in when our campus provides forums to discuss bias/hate incidents.
- Support those who have been targeted. Denounce “victim blaming,” and be available to listen to the hurt, fear, or anger.
- Request a program for your group from the MSL Diversity Educators or the Pride Center.
- Become familiar with UT Diversity Initiatives.
- Speak up when someone uses offensive or derogatory language.
- Be open to listening to and learning from others’ experiences.
Vols Help Vols!
*An umbrella term for these events is “bias incidents” — the bias can be due to gender, religious affiliation, sexual orientation, race/ethnicity, disability, and more. The incident may be graffiti/vandalism, verbal or written, or social media harassment, threats, physical assault, and more.