Message from President Jones Regarding an Incident

January 30, 2016

Dear Students, Faculty and Staff:

Early this morning, three of our students were harassed and assaulted while riding on a CDTA bus on Western Ave. in Albany.

The students, who are Black women, stated that racial slurs were used by the perpetrators, whom they described as a group of 10 to 12 white males and females.

I am deeply concerned, saddened and angry about this incident. There is no place in the UAlbany community for violence, no place for racial intolerance and no place for gender violence.

I am out of town today. I have decided to cut my trip short and will be returning to Albany as soon as I can to address this situation.

In the meantime, I have been in direct contact with the Provost and executive leadership team and have directed that the University respond rapidly and forcefully.

Our police, our student affairs personnel and our Office of Diversity and Inclusion staff are working together to support our young women.

We are working closely with the Albany Police Department to identify the persons responsible. If those individuals are UAlbany students, we will hold them fully accountable for their behavior.

I call upon all members of the University at Albany to unite. We must show the world that we stand for inclusiveness and stand against bias, violence and hatred.

Our annual Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. celebration will be held on the evening of Monday, Feb. 1. As we reflect on the principles and values that Dr. King stood for, let us come together in solidarity to reaffirm our values.

Now is the time to recommit to our principles of inclusivity and diversity and send a strong message that we will not tolerate bias, hatred and violence in our University.

Robert J. Jones