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*** UPDATED x2 *** SIUC has some explaining to do

Friday, Nov 8, 2019

* From the Daily Egyptian

SIU refers black students to Student Rights and Responsibilities twice as often as white students for drug-related offenses, mostly for the reported odor of cannabis.

The Daily Egyptian filed a Freedom of Information Act request for data on how many students were referred to SRR for drug-related offenses from 2017-2019. The information showed more than twice as many black students were referred than white students.

In 2017, 86 black students were referred to SRR compared to 43 white students. In 2018, the numbers were 77 black students to 29 white students. As of Oct. 20, 2019, the numbers were 40 black students to 22 white students. […]

When students are referred to SRR, they have to appear in a hearing and are then found responsible or not responsible, and given a status or educational sanction based on the results.

These sanctions range from a written assignment to expulsion from the university.

Daniel Vega, vice president of student affairs of the Undergraduate Student Government, said it is highly unfair and discriminatory that black students are being reprimanded for this behavior compared to the small percentage of white students who are being reprimanded.

Keep in mind that just 13.4 percent of SIUC students are black. And every study I’ve ever seen shows that white people and black people consume cannabis at about the same rate. And if you read the whole story, it sure looks like white folks are tattling on black students.

*** UPDATE 1 *** Yep…

*** UPDATE 2 *** Good on the students. The administration, however, should take this more seriously

Students at the University of Illinois Springfield held an anti-racism rally Thursday evening after an image of university employees surfaced online that students said is racist.

The image was of two university employees in Halloween costumes. One employee was dressed in a Border Patrol costume, while the other was dressed as a caricature of a Mexican man. […]

“Any behavior on the part of a member of our university community that makes others feel unsafe or unwelcome at UIS is concerning to me,” said UIS Chancellor Susan Koch in a statement.

She also said the matter is being reviewed, and the school diversity’s training will be expanded.

Diversity training is a good thing, but I seriously doubt it would’ve stopped this behavior

I mean, Luis Arroyo had to take ethics training when he was in the House.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - NotMe - Friday, Nov 8, 19 @ 10:29 am:

    I’d be curious to see the distribution of severity of sanctions as well. I’m gonna go out on a limb here and guess it’s even worse than the referral disparity.

  2. - H-W - Friday, Nov 8, 19 @ 10:41 am:

    On our campus, a student with a disciplinary hearing that results in a guilty finding can lose their scholarships, etc. Also, one of the key questions on FAFSA that students must answer in order to receive federal loans, MAP grants, etc. is “Have you every been found guilty of a drug offense? If a student answers yes, the lose the ability to get loans and grants.

    In this “war on drugs,” we the universities literally participate in the turning away of our own students, whose tuition revenues we desperately need. Some might call it a “Catch-22.” I call it insane.

  3. - efudd - Friday, Nov 8, 19 @ 10:43 am:

    Not just Anna, indeed.

  4. - SAP - Friday, Nov 8, 19 @ 10:43 am:

    See also, yesterday’s post about A-N-N-A. Yikes.

  5. - OpentoDiscussion - Friday, Nov 8, 19 @ 10:49 am:

    “I’d be curious to see the distribution of severity of sanctions as well. I’m gonna go out on a limb here and guess it’s even worse than the referral disparity.”

    Well I am NOT going to ‘guess’ that. But it is the type of data that should be gathered and analyzed.

    Hopefully, with the new cannabis laws in this state this will no longer be an issue.

  6. - Bruce( no not him) - Friday, Nov 8, 19 @ 10:51 am:

    I assume this is about students in university housing (dorms). It looks like only 22% of students live in housing. What is the racial breakdowns of that number?
    To talk about total enrollment numbers instead of housing numbers kind of skews the story.

  7. - OpentoDiscussion - Friday, Nov 8, 19 @ 10:53 am:

    I would also like the data to include a breakdown by sex as well.

  8. - G'Kar - Friday, Nov 8, 19 @ 11:09 am:

    Some things never change–it was pretty much that ratio when I was attending SIUC back in the `70’s.

  9. - NIU Grad - Friday, Nov 8, 19 @ 11:13 am:

    I’ve seen the racial disparities in day-to-day enforcement on campus. In the dorms, student/full time staff are much more willing to have a conversation with a white student when they smell cannabis (”Hey, I don’t want to have to write you up…”). But because of this sense of “the other” with minority students, they go straight to enforcement because they’re uncomfortable. The campuses won’t address that because they don’t want to tell their staff not to apply heavy enforcement with all violators…even though they know it’s not best-practice to send every single violator to the Standards Office.

  10. - Anyone Remember - Friday, Nov 8, 19 @ 11:14 am:

    “Referrals are generally made to Student Rights and Responsibilities by SIU’s Department of Public Safety, Carbondale Police Department and other officials,”

    Did the Daily Egyptian ask for comments from Carbondale PD? Jackson County Sheriff’s Office? Other area law enforcement agencies?

  11. - Thomas Paine - Friday, Nov 8, 19 @ 11:32 am:

    === To talk about total enrollment numbers instead of housing numbers kind of skews the story. ===

    Because, what? You think there are twice as many black students as white students in the dorms? LOLkay.

    To the earlier commenter, I assume that the statute still provides universities with rhecauthority to ban cannabis on campus and even in the dorms, so don’t expect this issue to go away.

    I would like to see the same data on alcohol.

  12. - Rich Miller - Friday, Nov 8, 19 @ 11:37 am:

    It’s always interesting to watch white people look for loopholes in stories like these.

  13. - the Edge - Friday, Nov 8, 19 @ 11:41 am:

    Hah, like, if you don’t like the smell of weed why don’t you knock on the door and let them know instead of running to the authorities.

  14. - Jocko - Friday, Nov 8, 19 @ 11:41 am:

    ==Because said they have no control over referrals made to their office.==

    That’s a pretty weak answer…refusing to accept that their RESPONSE to the referral is what’s being called into question.

  15. - Unpopular - Friday, Nov 8, 19 @ 11:43 am:

    Fun with numbers.

  16. - DuPage Saint - Friday, Nov 8, 19 @ 11:45 am:

    Busted for odor of weed? Just the odor? Ridiculous

  17. - Jocko - Friday, Nov 8, 19 @ 11:53 am:

    Not to diminish the cultural tone-deafness of the UIS employees (for example, all Mexicans are not members of mariachi bands), but when did they hire Rob Schneider?

  18. - Crispy - Friday, Nov 8, 19 @ 11:58 am:

    Anyone want to look at that pic of the UIS employees and claim with a straight face that their openness about their racism has no connection to the current occupant of the White House? Didn’t think so.

  19. - OneMan - Friday, Nov 8, 19 @ 12:01 pm:

    Back when OneMan was in school, they had to ’see it’ for it to be a dorm violation. You could have a keg in your room and as long as it wasn’t directly see they couldn’t/wouldn’t come after you.

    Also I am assuming that all dorms are non-smoking now. I can see (I guess) a smoking violation but I smell pot? Nice job there Dick Tracy. I smell some RAs being jerks.

    Again, there is a lot to be said in college in general for just suggesting someone ‘knock it off’ as it were.

  20. - JS Mill - Friday, Nov 8, 19 @ 12:07 pm:

    =Hopefully, with the new cannabis laws in this state this will no longer be an issue.=

    No. Marijuana will not be legal for those under 21, which encompasses most of the undergrad population. So no, it won’t go away.

    I think they need to take a deeper dive into the numbers and see if this is cannabis only (which seems unlikely) and how it impacts other areas.

    I also suspect that there is a due process issue. If it goes on their student record then the standard has to be probable cause which does not sound like it is being met. Being penalized or consequenced because someone “talked” to you does not meet that standard. Students should look at legal

  21. - dbk - Friday, Nov 8, 19 @ 12:16 pm:

    Pretty depressing but not all that surprising.

    I had occasion yesterday to read a complaint filed against the City of Peoria by HOPE Fair Housing Center in federal district court. Complaint focused on how Peoria enforces its chronic nuisance ordinance. African-Americans make up 27% of the city’s pop; 71.6% of “abatements” (i.e. evictions) directed against them.

    The Complaint has a map showing where these occurred in the period under study for the case - you don’t need a key to get the point.

    Filing was done under the Fair Housing Act because the high eviction rate of African - Americans contributes to housing discrimination / continued segregation in Peoria, and under the Illinois Civil Rights Act because WOC are disproportionately affected, and many are evicted for calling the police re: their domestic abusers.

    The City pretty much leaves the unit charged with enforcement on their own; not clear whether there are explicit written guidelines for enforcement, but there are implicit ones, as the Complaint made obvious.

    Complaint can be linked from the website of the law firm representing HOPE Fair Housing:

  22. - Say What? - Friday, Nov 8, 19 @ 12:46 pm:

    Can you be a Saluki in good standing and narc on another student for smoking weed?

    I never met an SIU-C student who didn’t smoke weed in the early 80’s.

  23. - Donnie Elgin - Friday, Nov 8, 19 @ 1:02 pm:

    Dorm room 101 - bounce dryer sheets and toilet paper roll. Problem solved

  24. - Maryjane - Friday, Nov 8, 19 @ 1:04 pm:

    “To forbid or even seriously to restrict the use of so holy and gracious an herb as the hemp would cause widespread suffering and annoyance and to large bands of worshiped ascetics, deep-seated anger. It would rob the people of a solace in discomfort, of a cure in sickness, of a guardian whose gracious protection saves them from the attacks of evil influences… So grand a result, so tiny a sin!”

    J.M. Campbell
    “On the Religion of Hemp”

  25. - Flapdoodle - Friday, Nov 8, 19 @ 1:09 pm:

    Rich @ 11:37 ==It’s always interesting to watch white people look for loopholes in stories like these.==

    Zing with extra hot sauce. Dead on.

  26. - Ron Burgundy - Friday, Nov 8, 19 @ 1:14 pm:

    -Hopefully, with the new cannabis laws in this state this will no longer be an issue-

    It will still be an issue. Campuses that receive federal funds can’t allow what the feds consider illegal drugs on campus, whether legal in the state or not. Many campuses are also Smoke Free, regardless of what is being smoked (maybe not hams), so smoking weed on campus will still be a student code violation and a fire hazard in dorms.

  27. - Exposed - Friday, Nov 8, 19 @ 1:21 pm:

    I’m glad someone has questioned the blatant acts of this University’s system. All I could do is shake my head after reading the article yesterday. Racism and Discrimination at it Finest…

  28. - Just Observing - Friday, Nov 8, 19 @ 2:04 pm:

    === Dorm room 101 - bounce dryer sheets and toilet paper roll. ===

    ^^ This comment made me think… perhaps just SOME of the disparity comes with how different people consume pot. Maybe AA students, at a greater rate, are more traditional and enjoy smoking the flower, whereas white students are, at a greater rate, using vape pens and edibles.

    This is just food for thought. I think the numbers are pretty alarming and point to enforcement disparity. Cuz trust me, being a white suburban kid that went to college and hung out with a lot of other white people, I can attest that white college kids really, really, really like their pot.

  29. - Bruce( no not him) - Friday, Nov 8, 19 @ 2:10 pm:

    I read the part about about a writing assignment as punishment, and all I see is Bart Simpson.
    I will not smoke pot in the dorm.
    I will not smoke pot in the dorm.
    I will… etc. etc. etc.

  30. - Steve Rogers - Friday, Nov 8, 19 @ 2:15 pm:

    Say What: I went to SIUC in the mid 80s and while I didn’t smoke any pot directly, I probably second hand smoked a ton of it at all the concerts I went to at the Arena.

  31. - Flapdoodle - Friday, Nov 8, 19 @ 3:26 pm:

    JS Mill @12:07

    I’m told by a senior university student conduct that probable cause does not apply. I didn’t quite follow all the legal reasons for this, but it’s basically because all actions and any sanctions occur under institutional rules, not under law. Students agree to the rules on enrolling. At issue would be whether an institution adhered to its own established standards and procedures. These themselves and their implementation might be challenged for discriminatory intent or effect, but not due process. As to standards of proof, about 93 percent of higher ed institutions use preponderance, the other 7 percent use clear and convincing.

  32. - Flapdoodle - Friday, Nov 8, 19 @ 3:27 pm:

    Drat — senior university student conduct administrator

  33. - R A T - Friday, Nov 8, 19 @ 4:15 pm:

    I know the people in the UIS picture and the students are right in their assessment of them. In fact, I’m shocked they were this tame.

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.

* Reader comments closed for the weekend
* Pritzker thanks Dr. Ezike, extends financial protections, points to progress, says no more daily COVID-19 briefings - Calls Trump tweets "reprehensible" - "I want to send my condolences to the family of George Floyd, and also to every African American in this country" - Defends budget decisions - Credits Illinoisans for progress against virus - No bill signing ceremonies - Hopes testing progress continues - "It seems as if President Trump is withdrawing us from the rest of the world" - No out of state travel plans - Talks contact tracing - Asks Illinoisans to be careful during reopening - Will sign Medicare for undocumented seniors bill - Refuses to criticize Lightfoot for Trump comments - Talks about difficulties in securing testing locations - Dr. Ezike and Pritzker respond to question about what they've learned about themselves and leadership - "We're no longer in a stay at home order"
* 1,622 new cases, 86 additional deaths
* *** UPDATED x1 *** What in the heck is going on in Rockford?
* COVID-19 roundup
* All metro areas reporting record high unemployment rates
* School seclusion and restraint bill derailed after opposition
* Attorney DeVore asks appellate court to dissolve another TRO
* Question of the day
* Madigan issues new guidance to members, staff
* Architects abandon alternative reopening plan
* SUBSCRIBERS ONLY - Supplement to today’s edition
* House of worship attendance limit expected to be removed from stay at home order
* Open thread
* SUBSCRIBERS ONLY - Today's edition of Capitol Fax (use all CAPS in password)
* Sheriffs file suit against state for refusing to accept jail transfers
* Pritzker says IDPH has offered "suggestions" to churches - Says he's received "pushback" from some private nursing homes - IDPH will file new rule on nursing homes - Still looking at what to do about IDPH rule - Dodges question about Willie Wilson - Employers should use "common decency" when bring workers back - Will wait on feds before making any more budget decisions - Central Illinois hospitalization numbers improve - "We might potentially have to move backwards in the phases - "Not our intention" to make changes to Phase 4 guidance - No plans to dine at restaurant this weekend - No decision about ending daily briefing - Repeats that he has never encouraged police enforcement - Suggests GOP demand for IDES audit could be a "political move" - Still pondering school reopening - All testing is free - Asked about dangers of Legionella in large buildings - Testing and tracing metrics are "internal goals" - Points to federal rules on unemployment and workers who refuse to return - "Difficult for us to open theaters in the near future" - Dr. Ezike talks rules for malls - Dr. Ezike monitoring outbreak at county jail with ICE detainees
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