University of Exeter’s Students’ Guild Respond to the Unlearn Collective:
The University of Exeter’s Students‘ Guild responds to the Unlearn Collective’s open letter for anti-racism.
Firstly, we wanted to thank you for taking the time to raise this hugely important issue with us. As a community, we need to address these issues together, so thank you to our members who have made such a passionate call for action.
We absolutely recognise there is significant work to be done to ensure we can truly call our University an anti-racist, inclusive and safe place for Black students and students from minority ethnic backgrounds. In order to do this, we need to reflect on where we are as an organisation. For us to move forward on this issue it is essential that we have these internal discussions and ensure that the plans and promises we make to you, our members, are the right approach and can have maximum positive impact on students’ experience.
We are committed to working with our community on this – as a membership led organisation, our direction going forward needs to reflect this, and as such we will be creating a plan that holds our members’ input at its centre.
We support the University’s response to your letter and their pledged actions – ultimately this is an issue in which we need to be united on going forward to make real positive change on our campuses.
As our plans develop, we will provide updates as often as we can, however, would urge students to:
- Visit our Black Lives Matter portal – we want to collaborate with students as much as possible on this, so please get in touch with the Officers if you have any feedback on how we can develop this.
- Attend Black Lives Matter: A Solidarity Demonstration, an event Penny Dinh, Vice President Education, is leading on Thursday 25 June from 15:30. The event live on Facebook and Zoom will provide a space to amplify Black voices, and a space to show our solidarity with the Black community at Exeter. Guest speakers can register here.
- If you have been a victim or have witnessed discrimination, please report it to the University’s Speak Out platform.
We recognise that actions speak louder than words, and so we hope that we can prove our commitment to this cause in the coming weeks and months, and to make lasting change in the future. We look forward to working with each and every single student who has signed your open letter, and others who want to get involved, to make our campuses an actively anti-racist one.
Your Students’ Guild
Read the open letter here.