The College was recently notified of the placement of stickers on College property purporting to be from the New Jersey European Heritage Association (NJEHA), a group identified by the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) as a small, New Jersey-based white supremacist group. Public Safety located the two stickers on the north end of campus and immediately removed them. The ADL Website advises that the NJEHA “espouses racism, anti-Semitism and intolerance under the guise of ‘saving’ white European peoples from purported imminent extinction.”

The College of Staten Island condemns the hatred, bigotry, and intolerance of extremist groups. I have repeatedly noted that our Mission has always been to provide our students with an environment that allows them to achieve excellence and to embrace diversity, and to provide an inclusive and respectful workspace for our employees. We are proud to be a diverse and welcoming campus for students, faculty, and staff with a wide range of backgrounds, experiences, and perspectives. We remain committed to these goals and have no tolerance for efforts to undermine our free and open environment.

Institutions of higher education should be the center for serious conversations on difficult topics, and the College will continue to support the free exchange of ideas and differing viewpoints. However, any actions that violate CUNY’s Policy on Equal Opportunity and Non-Discrimination will not be tolerated.

In this month when we celebrate the birth and life of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., let us remember his words that, “Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.”  In that spirit, if you see something on our campus that violates CUNY’s Non-Discrimination and/or Equal Opportunity policies, please notify Campus Safety for review and appropriate action. Reports can be made by calling 718.982.2116; in the event of an emergency please dial 718.982.2111.

Together we build a stronger campus.

By William J. Fritz