The University of Colorado is investigating a spate of bias-motivated harassment incidents reported on campus this month.
The school’s Office of Institutional Equity and Compliance has received nine reports of bias-motivated harassment since Nov. 1, campus spokeswoman Deborah Mendez Wilson said.
The office received zero such reports through the first half of November last year.
Federal law protects the privacy of those who report to the university as victims of or witnesses to these incidents, but campus spokeswoman Deborah Mendez Wilson said the nine reported this month can be broadly characterized as having been “directed at CU community members based on their appearance, their way of dressing, perceived gender identity, skin color, accent or political orientation.”
One of the nine incidents was confirmed by a student to have involved the school’s Women and Gender Studies department. Someone left flyers with discriminatory language — the exact content of which was unspecified — in the department offices, Mendez Wilson said.
She did not comment on the other eight reported incidents.
A female CU student also reported being groped by a man who told her there’s now nothing she can do about it.
It’s not known if either of those two incidents are included in the nine that CU is investigating.
Mendez Wilson said the university hopes anyone with information on these or other bias-motivated incidents will contact the Office of Institutional Equity and Compliance at 303-492-2127.
“The big thing for us right now is getting the message out and making sure that all of our students, faculty and staff know that we don’t tolerate harassment or discrimination on campus,” she added.
“Anyone who has witnessed an incident like that or they feel they’ve been a target of identity-based harassment, we encourage that they report these incidents immediately, even if they don’t know the perpetrator.”
Alex Burness: twitter.com/alex_burness