A new campaign has been launched by the University of Sheffield’s Black and Minority Ethnic (BME) committee, highlighting the microaggressions directed at BME students on campus.
‘A Bit Racist Is Still Racist’ will tackle microaggressions, which are statements or actions that discriminate marginalised groups and ethnic minorities. They are not as blatant and direct as hate crimes so often get overlooked for the harm they cause.
With this campaign, the committee want to show that any form of racism is unacceptable.
A statement from the committee said: “We as a committee feel that each person should take responsibility for their actions towards fellow students.
“Small changes to one person’s behaviour could vastly improve the student experiences of others.”
As part of their week-long campaign, the BME committee have collected experiences of racism from students and collated them into a gallery being displayed this week.
“It is not right that anyone should be made to feel unwelcome or uncomfortable and we have a duty within our university environments to improve ourselves and learn from one another,” the committee added.
Some quotes from BME students include:
Being asked if I feel “more white or black”
You’re the first not white girl I’ve been attracted to
Being asked “where I was going to go” after Brexit
Campaign organiser Loma Sylvana said: “I put together the campaign initially because I believe that there isn’t enough acknowledgement at the university of the constant and insidious nature of the racism experienced by BME students.
“By collecting microaggressions experienced by the BME student body we as a committee wanted to spotlight that these microaggressions are occurring, that those experiencing them are not alone and that those perpetrating them are not behaving acceptably. Hence, the name of the campaign, ‘A Bit Racist Is Still Racist’,” she added.
To see the full gallery head to: https://su.sheffield.ac.uk/make-a-change/campaigning/a-bit-racist-is-still-racist