University of Richmond students, alumni plan protest as uproar continues over building names

Richmond

RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — Some University of Richmond students and alumni with ties to the Black Student Coalition have planned a protest for Wednesday afternoon. This comes as racial tensions continue on campus surrounding two controversial building names.

The march is scheduled for noon on campus and all participants are encouraged to wear black and bring signs. Organizers say they are less than pleased with the Board of Trustee’s response surrounding the issue.

“Mostly, the university community doesn’t see the Board as honest brokers,” said Chris Wiggins, a U of R alum. “People feel like they are just punting this issue until students have left for summer.”

On Monday, the Board of Trustees announced it would suspend recent decisions to not rename Ryland and Mitchell-Freeman Halls, both named after a slave owner and a segregationist.

The board did not release specific details about their plan; however, in a statement said it was “reviewing options for a broader, more inclusive process to determine how decisions are made about questions of renaming.”

Still, students and alumni are pressing for more concrete answers and actions.

In addition to the protest, concerned alum are encouraging donors to hold off on giving money to the University until actions have been made.

As of Tuesday night, the university’s “Giving Day” had been put on hold with only a single $25 donation. School leaders did not specify why it was canceled; however, flyers have been circulating on social media with the message “I’ll keep my dollars till you #ChangeTheNames.”

At this time, the University has not released a response to the planned protest.

Stay with 8News for updates.

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