University of Rhode Island (URI) students have planned a mass walkout and gathering at the campus Quad for Tuesday, November 15th at 11am. Organizers state that “…this is not a protest, but an expression of solidarity with marginalized voices on campus and in the community at large. We have extended the invitation to join us to any and all URI community members, faculty, staff and administration. We will speak, we will read, we will sing and share.”
At the gathering, organizers will work in “building collaborative networks that can effectively respond to threats to personal, physical and emotional safety.”
Students have contributed their concerns and demands in an open letter directed at the University’s administration and the broader campus community.
Alicia Haas, a member of the collective, says demands include “…that the university and its faculty/staff works to make the university a safe place and guarantees to protect and stand by its students in the face of any and all discrimination, harassment, or violence and that the university will act as a resource and support system in defense of its students rights, should any become challenged during the time of uncertainty that lies ahead.”
Anyse Carey, a nursing student at URI, stated: “I want to create a safe haven for every person at URI. I never want anyone to feel unsafe or unwanted and I hope that this rally is a step in the direction of unity and solidarity. I also want to acknowledge the real and present fears many of the students have. I hope we can address these fears and create a game plan for what we are going to do moving forward. I hope to add to our team of like minded people who are ready to fight and are tired of being complicit.”
Although the walkout is planned on the same day that Student Action USA is promoting their #StopTrump campus walkout, URI students have embraced immediate human concerns and building an issues-based movement instead of an anti-Trump message.