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FSU President Thrasher announces Special Task Force on Anti-Racism and Racial Equality

Senator John Thrasher
Posted at 11:43 AM, Jul 06, 2020
and last updated 2020-07-06 11:45:30-04

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WTXL) — Florida State University President John Thrasher has announced a Special Task Force on Anti-Racism and Racial Equality due to the recent events related to racial injustices.

In a letter addressed to staff and students, Thrasher stated that he has "spent the past several weeks listening and learning from countless individuals within the FSU family who have experienced oppression and acts of racism."

Thrasher added that he is committed to moving the university forward in addressing these challenges through meaningful and even difficult dialogue, providing support and implementing structural change.

The letter states that the work is immediate and will commence with actions that advance FSU’s Strategic Plan Goal III – to Realize the University’s Full Potential of Diversity and Inclusion.

Next week, President Thrasher will announce the appointment of a Special Presidential Task Force on Anti-Racism and Racial Equality for the 2020-2021 academic year.

The task force will be charged with exploring the university’s historical connections to race and ethnicity, identifying racial/ethnic disparities on campus and implementing initiatives in support of the diversity and inclusion goal in the University’s strategic plan.

This task force will be results-driven and transparent in its work, providing regular updates to my leadership team as well as the campus community.

President Thrasher says he is convinced that through continuing dialogue and innovative solutions, the task force will achieve an even better and stronger Florida State University.

Below are the actions FSU will engage in:

  • Town Hall meetings with student organizations, faculty and staff, and alumni, including identity and affinity groups representing Black and LatinX members of the campus community
  • A review of the report from the President’s Advisory Panel on University Namings and the development of a plan for assessment and implementation
  • Creation of an educational outreach program about FSU’s history and relationship with the Seminole Tribe of Florida
  • The Division of Student Affairs will launch the Student Equity and Inclusion Office, a resource office focused on further educating, training, and implementing programs and services aimed at fostering a more inclusive student experience.
  • Implementation of mandatory diversity and inclusion training for all students, faculty and staff to commence Fall semester 2020
  • Intensifying efforts to recruit, support and retain students, faculty and staff from underrepresented groups. Part of this effort includes the administration of a campus climate survey during Fall semester to identify and mitigate barriers to recruitment and retention of faculty and staff from underrepresented groups.
  • Partnering with FSUPD to administer anti-bias training to officers and establish a Community Relations liaison within the force. Additionally, the University will request that an FSU student representative be appointed to the TPD Community Review Board.

Click here to learn more about the task force.