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Follow-up on disturbing social media posts

Dear Stanford community,

I am writing to follow up on the abhorrent and racist social media posts that appeared on Sunday, and that I wrote you about yesterday. Unfortunately, they were compounded today by an additional series of misogynistic and otherwise offensive posts.

Due to the threatening nature of several of the weekend posts, and the violent imagery accompanying them, many of you have expressed concern for the safety of members of the Stanford community. We take our obligation to provide for your safety and wellbeing extremely seriously, and we have held this obligation firmly in mind as we have been working to address this matter.

As a first step, the university has prohibited the student who authored the posts from entering Stanford’s campus or facilities. I want you to know this as a matter of community safety. It is our understanding, moreover, that the student is not in the state.

We also are taking other, additional steps under our policies to respond to this incident. In doing so, we will be following the relevant university processes. Many details of matters involving individual students are protected by privacy requirements. But I want to emphasize as strongly as possible that we will be working to ensure a safe living and learning environment for everyone at Stanford.

Finally, we are working to follow up with individuals and communities who have been most directly affected by this incident. The posts created pain, fear and anger for many people. The threatening language and identity-based attacks in the posts are totally inconsistent with what we want, or will accept, at Stanford.

We seek to support the emotional wellbeing of members of our community in the wake of this incident and will continue to reach out to offer that support. Even as the university does so, please reach out yourself to the university’s support resources for students, the Faculty Staff Help Center or our other resources if they can be helpful to you in any way.


Marc Tessier-Lavigne