University of Wisconsin-Madison students and community responds to signs posted on campus

A series of posters placed around the University of Wisconsin-Madison is creating conversation among students and the community about underrepresentation on campus.

“We want to be clear that UW-Madison stands against racism and all other forms of hate and any messages of exclusion.” @UWMadison is still investigating these signs posted around campus. #News3Now

— Gabriella Bachara (@GabbyBachara) October 18, 2019

In a statement, UW-Madison said, “These posters appear now to be part of a coordinated campaign calling attention to experiences of underrepresented students.”

UW-Madison senior Jeremy Sanford said he was initially upset about the posters but had a change of heart upon realizing they were a part of a protest.

“I hope it is a call to change. I hope it will actually result in some change in behavior and attitude, in general,” Sanford said.

Sanford said he is hoping these signs will provide the opportunity to have a communitywide discussion about underrepresentation.

“They need to see that it is a good message, that we need to be talking about these things and having these conversations, these difficult conversations that are uncomfortable in a place like Wisconsin but it is necessary in order to improve this environment for everyone,” Sanford said.

Dane County Equal Opportunities Commission Vice Chair Jose Rea said actions such as this are a call for more equality in and around Madison.

“With the policies that exist today and like with a lot of incidents that happen, this hasn’t surprised me that statements like this would have been posted, whether in protest or to make a sign of hatred,” Rea said. “There needs to be more equity when it comes to resources that are distributed in the city.”

UW-Madison said it is still gathering information and will follow up appropriately.

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