Two flyers promoting racist and anti-diversity ideologies found near Student Services Building

Update [Feb. 10, 2020]: Two more of these flyers were found near the Park Building and Warnock Engineering Building the morning of Monday, Feb. 10, 2020.

Update [Jan. 22, 2020]: Another flyer from the same website was found in a men’s restroom in the William Stewart Building on Jan. 21, 2020.

Two flyers with racist and anti-immigration messages were found taped to a bench outside the Student Services Building on Thursday, Jan. 16, 2020. The flyers came from the website MalcomXFiles.com. The Anti-Defamation League does not have information about the website or those responsible for it, but the university has reported the incident, and it may help the organization identify new or unknown groups. Additionally, university police are working with state and federal partners to gather information about those responsible for the website.

What is being done

When the flyers were found, they were removed from the bench and discarded in a trash receptacle and then reported to university police. When the officer arrived, the flyers were located in a nearby trashcan and documented. In incidents like this, video surveillance is reviewed, and campus police work with state and federal partners to gather intel and evaluate the level of threat. Additionally, the documentation can be used as evidence if any related illegal activity occurs. Officers will remain on alert for similar activities across campus. If more information becomes available, an update will be posted at safeu.utah.edu.

These flyers were posted in violation of the university posting policy. If students are found to be involved, the Office of the Dean of Students will contact them to discuss policies, relevant sanctions and provide education about the background, history and impact of these messages. This is standard protocol for all posting violations.

The Office of the Dean of Students always reports incidents like these, which are tactics known to be used by white supremacist groups to recruit college students, to the Anti-Defamation League in order to be included among national statistics and to improve trend mapping.

To facilitate further education and dialogue on campus about this important issue, the U is hosting a panel discussion about anti-Semitism on Feb. 5 as part of its annual U Remembers event, which reflects on the historical events of religious discrimination and genocide and pulls parallels from contemporary social issues of today. In March, the Office for Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion will host a panel about the rise of white nationalism.

Campus administrators and the Racist and Bias Incident Response Protocol Committee were notified. This information, including the list of resources below, is being shared with those who work in the nearby Union and Student Services buildings, Student Affairs staff, as well as staff and partners of the Office for Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion.

What to do

University policy sets the requirements for postings on campus. Flyers that are posted contrary to the policy will be removed. You can contact Facilities Management or the University Department of Public Safety (after hours) to alert them of posting violations. More information about the university’s posting guidelines are available here.

  • University Department of Public Safety: 801-581-2677
  • University Facilities Management: 801-581-7221

Students, faculty, staff and visitors who believe they have been the target of bias, intolerance or discrimination may report an incident to the Office for Inclusive Excellence (bias and intolerance) or the Office of Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action (sexual misconduct and discrimination).

The U is committed to fostering a safe and supportive campus community. Below is a list of some campus offices that are available to the campus community:

The U is committed to equity, diversity and inclusion

The University of Utah strongly condemns bias, discrimination, racism, bigotry and hate in the strongest possible terms and is no place for violence. We support fostering an inclusive campus and are committed to diversity. U administrators want to assure students, faculty and staff that they are dedicated to creating a safe, welcoming and equitable campus where we work together to engage, support and advance a living, learning and working environment that fosters values of respect, diversity, inclusivity and academic excellence.

President Ruth V. Watkins addressed this in a previous message to campus. Additional information about these types of critical conversations, including a discussion about intent vs. impact, surviving and thriving, claiming space and more, is available online.