The Eureka chapter of the NAACP posted a press release on their website on April 26 asking recruiters from Humboldt State University to stop going to majority-minority areas and recruiting students of color.
The press release listed several demands of the university changes and a call on the university to “forgo” the access to money that this recruitment opens up to the university.
In the press release the NAACP said “HSU recruiters continue to travel to minority-majority communities, with the intent to enroll more students of color. Yet there has been no consistent presence of HSU administrators at the monthly vigils organized and facilitated by the students and Charmaine Lawson, the mother of Josiah Lawson.”
The NAACP also expressed that HSU should be more transparent to students of color when it comes to racism in HSU.
“If HSU is ‘number one for Social Justice’ as advertised, the University must accept responsibility for the negative impacts of its actions and inactions on students of color immediately,” the NAACP said..
The NAACP also called out the college’s responsibility to protect students from “foreseeable violence on campus and in school-related activities off campus,” claiming that HSU was not taking action to do so. This responsibility is based off a California Supreme Court ruling in March that colleges must protect their students from foreseeable violence in a classroom setting.
HSU President Lisa Rossbacher sent out a brief statement in response, expressing her thoughts on the NAACP’s press release.
“I was astonished that the Eureka NAACP chapter would suggest that HSU could or should stop recruiting students of color,” Rossbacher said in her statement. “HSU is deeply committed to diversity and equality, and that would be a giant step backward for the values and mission of this university.”
It‘s no secret to some that Humboldt State University’s administration has been facing criticism from students for lack of acknowledging racism around the campus, and its failure to protect students from the murder of HSU student Josiah Lawson to the students who have shared experience of rampant racism in Humboldt county.