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Statement on reported racial incident (Oct. 21, 2019)

Two African American students living on campus in the Brody neighborhood reported a racial incident over the weekend regarding toilet paper that was left on their door which they believed resembled a noose. MSU Police and members of the Residential and Hospitality Services team responded immediately. After initial discussions, other student residents came forward and volunteered that they had taped up decorations in the hall as part of what they referred to as a Halloween prank, which were not meant to offend anyone or denote any racial bias and were not intended to resemble a noose. The impact on members of our campus community is taken seriously and is being investigated in accordance with university policies.

On Sunday, the university hosted a restorative conversation in the residence hall and more than 60 students participated. It is important to remember that actions and words meant to hurt someone based on their identity have no place in our community. We believe it is our responsibility to create and maintain an environment that is physically and emotionally safe, respectful and inclusive. Any student found to be responsible for a bias incident will face disciplinary action via the student conduct system. The MSUPD and the MSU Office of Institutional Equity are both investigating this situation and the university will continue to provide support to all students involved.

-Emily Guerrant, MSU Spokesperson