Request for feedback on proposed new model to support free speech and protest Inbox

To: UCSC Community

From: Chancellor Cindy Larive

I write to you today to apologize. I regret the impact the large police presence in February 2020 had on our students and community, and especially that we lacked more mechanisms for listening, productive dialog and understanding our differences to help avoid that kind of impasse. Students have told me that they did not feel the decisions made during the February protests were intended to keep them safe. I recognize that for many, these events broke trust in our community. I know we will continue working through these experiences throughout the year as our campus returns to in-person instruction and work.

To help our campus do better in the future, I invite the campus community to provide feedback on the Support Structures for Free Speech and Lawful Protest Proposal. The proposal reflects the cross-section of feedback we have received and operationalizes the call for a more community-centered approach. The proposal includes four groups that will have responsibilities for supporting students’ First Amendment activities and describes how these changes will build upon our past structure by improving transparency, opportunities for listening, and broadening campus engagement. Over the course of the fall quarter, we are consulting with a wide range of campus stakeholders and will utilize this feedback to improve the proposed structure and processes. Every campus community member is invited to provide feedback directly through the linked survey which can be completed anonymously.

During this transitional period, the structures that currently support protest activities, the Emergency Management Policy group (EMPG) and Demonstration Operations Team (DOT), will remain in place. The consultation period will conclude on December 10, 2021, the last day of fall quarter. Please submit all feedback to the linked form by that date. Updates to the proposal reflecting the feedback received will be shared in early January 2022 along with a timeline for transitioning to the new structure.

I would like to thank the Campus Safety Community Advisory Board, ably led by Associate Vice Chancellor for Equity and Equal Protection Isabel Dees and Oakes College Provost and Associate Professor of Feminist Studies Marcia Ochoa, and the Graduate Student Association officers and graduate students who participated in listening sessions with campus leaders for recommending that an apology was an important(although not the only) step in the community accountability process.