Speak out against racism and discrimination toward Asian students and staff

This is a statement by the Chief Diversity Officer (CDO) Team and the Central Student Council (CSR) of the University of Amsterdam (UvA) denouncing the recent rise in discrimination against Asian students and staff as a result of the spread of the new coronavirus. We call on all staff, students and members of the UvA community to take a stand against xenophobia, and speak out against racism.

The UvA aims to ensure an inclusive learning and working environment that enables all students and staff to feel at home, regardless of their individual backgrounds, and increases the quality of our teaching, our research and our societal impact.

Unfortunately, incidents of racist comments and behavior against Asian students are on the rise, fueled by fear and ignorance regarding the new coronavirus. These incidents are in direct violation of what we, the staff and students of the UvA stand for. This behavior includes avoiding Asian students on campus; refusing to sit near Asian students in classrooms; and asking Asian students not to come too close because people nearby “do not want to die.” If you witness such behavior, please assume an active bystander role and speak out against these comments.

The CDO team and CSR urges the UvA to come together as a community and not give in to fear, ignorance and intolerance.

Help seeking resources

Confidential advisers are the first point of contact for students and staff who experience undesirable behavior or witness misconduct and can help them look for a solution. The ombudsperson is an addition to the support system (including confidential advisers)  to investigate cases. The ombudsperson can provide support with regard to questions, dilemmas or conflicts at work or within a degree program. That support may consist of a meeting or more in-depth consultation, advice, referral, mediation or the initiation of an independent investigation.

All contact with the confidential advisers and ombudsperson will be treated as confidential. Your report will be recorded anonymously.
For more information and official UvA updates about the new coronavirus, please visit the page uva.nl/coronavirus.


UvA Signatories:

Central Student Council
Chief Diversity Officer Team
Faculty Diversity Officers
UvA Ombudsperson


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