SYRACUSE, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — A string of racist and anti-Semitic incidents reported at Syracuse University has school officials shutting down all fraternity activities for the rest of the semester.
The most recent one happened Saturday night and it prompted students to protest, CBS2’s Jessica Layton reported.
“I have deep appreciation of the pain, anger and anxiety recent events have caused on our campus,” Syracuse Chancellor Kent Syverud said.
In an attempt to calm outrage and fear, Syverud posted a new video message to students, staff and alumni after ongoing racial tension hit a new boiling point Saturday night. A female student said members and guests of a fraternity verbally attacked her, yelling the “N” word. The school took immediate action.
“The social activities of all fraternities have been suspended for the remainder of this semester,” Syverud said.
A check of the university’s website for fraternity status showed Alpha Chi Ro has been suspended.
The upsetting, racially charged incident was the sixth in the last 10 days. University public safety cars have been parked outside various dorms and buildings on campus that have been defaced with racist symbols, anti-Asian and anti -Semitic graffiti.
“There’s definitely like bubbling tension,” SU graduate student Isaac Howland said.
Howland lived in Brooklyn before going to Syracuse. He compared the punishment of no social events for another month to a slap on the wrist.
“It doesn’t seem like it’s gonna have much long-lasting effect beyond the semester or, at best, next semester. It’s just like, yeah, you guys can’t throw any more parties,” Howland said.
Feelings of the university not doing enough have prompted peaceful protests in the form of sit-ins on the diverse campus of more than 22,000 students.
The protesters have given the university a deadline of Wednesday to address a list of demands, which includes allocating $1 million to create new curriculum on diversity issues.
This all follows the expulsion of a fraternity in April 2018, after disturbing video emerged showing members of Theta Tau making racist, sexist and anti-Semitic remarks. In all, 18 students were suspended.
A donor has put up $50,000 for information that leads to the arrest of those responsible for these racist acts.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo directed the State Police Hate Crimes Task Force and the Division of Human Rights to investigate the vandalism.