Concern over Verbal Assaults Against API Students and Staff [SAPAAC Board Statement]

To the Leadership of Stanford University,

Every generation of Stanford students deserves to learn and grow in an environment that is safe, respectful, and welcoming. As alumni of Asian American and Pacific Islander (API) descent, we were disturbed by the reports of harassment of API persons on the Stanford campus since February, including students and staff members of the Asian American Activities Center. We understand that incidents have occurred across campus, including at White Plaza, Tresidder, the bookstore, the arboretum, and that the verbal assaults included suggestions that Asians were “invading” campus.

(1)  We encourage the University to thoroughly investigate the assaults and do its utmost to prevent individuals who use threatening language from repeating this behavior.

(2)  We ask the University to reassure Asian American and Pacific Islander students and staff that they are in a safe environment, and to affirm that Asians are welcome on campus.

(3)  We suggest proactively meeting with the API community and listening to their concerns on these matters, whether students or their staff and alumni representatives. Their insights can inform the response to such incidents, as well aid the University in creating a broader environment of inclusion.

As concerned alumni, we will continue to monitor the situation and will consult with the A3C and API groups to ensure that students feel safe. We hope that concrete actions are taken in response to these incidents, and periodically placed back on the Administration’s agenda for review.

Thank you for supporting an educational environment that welcomes all persons, regardless of race, gender, religion, sexual orientation, or nationality. 

Sincerely,
Board of Directors, SAPAAC
Stanford Asian Pacific American Alumni Club