Earlier this week, some University of Louisville employees arrived at work only to find an effigy in a tree in Stansbury Park. This park is right across the street from the Kent School of Social Work (MAP).
Upon further investigation, the effigy turned out to be a headless Halloween decoration dressed entirely in black.
UofL's Interim President, Greg Postel, M.D., sent an email to the University staff saying:Colleagues,
This week, some UofL employees arrived at work to find an effigy in a tree in Stansbury Park across the street from the Kent School of Social Work. The figure turned out to be a headless Halloween decoration dressed entirely in black. Some observers believe it is racist in its message; others believe it may simply be a prank that has been misinterpreted.
Regardless, it gives us an opportunity to reflect on our values as a university community.
At the University of Louisville, we celebrate diversity. We work hard to build an environment of mutual respect. We embrace and learn from our differences.
We have strong academic programs and entities such as our Cultural Center and LGBT Center, which seek to help students, faculty and staff understand our differences, build on our strengths and share with each other to promote an inclusive environment.
We support these initiatives because it’s the right thing to do. And we do it because this is what we want to be: a compassionate, supportive, welcoming community in which we appreciate what makes us individually unique and learn from each other.
Regardless of its intent, this week’s incident reminds us that we, as a campus, must remain vigilant in building that community.
I hope you’ll join me in reaffirming our commitment to be a diverse, inclusive campus.Greg Postel, M.D.
The University's police force is currently looking into this matter. If you have any information, contact the ULPD.