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Race questions in Yale: Police called Black Students to sleep in their own dorm



Faith Chumo, a Yale student from Kenya, strives to dress well before she goes out, hoping to minimize insulting misperceptions due to her skin color. It does not always work.

One night last year, Chumo came home from a party with a friend and noticed that she had forgotten her magnetic card. As she waited for security, a white student approached the gate and Chumo's friend – who is black – walked up to the woman and asked if she could let her in.

"She turned and she ran," said Chumo. "There are all those psychological things that we have to move just to get through."

Chumo remembered Wednesday night's meeting, two days after a white graduate student in Yale had called the police on a black graduate student who had fallen asleep in a joint

Lolade Siyonbola published two videos of the Monday meeting on her Facebook Page, including a conversation with the white student who told her she called the police after she found her on a couch in Yale's Hall (1

9659006) After Siyonbola had been questioned for more than 15 minutes, she confirmed the police that she was a Yale student who lived in the building and then left. The police told her that the encounter lasted longer because her name was not spelled correctly in a student information database.

Chumo said she was not surprised by the incident. "The assumption is that if you're white and you're dressed neatly, you're a Yale student, and if you do not look that way, you're not," she said. "Colored people walk around the campus insecurity, and there are very obvious bigotry and campus prejudices."

Siyonbola did not respond immediately to emails and social media messages that demanded a comment. She expressed her gratitude on Tuesday on her Facebook page for "the love, kind words and prayers" she has received.

"The Black Yale community is incredible and cares about me," she wrote. "I know this incident is a drop in the bucket of trauma that black people have endured America since Day 1, and you all have stories."

The videos show how Siyonbola told the police that the woman who called her was suffering from a mental illness and had called. Www.mjfriendship.de/de/index.php?op…39&Itemid=32 The Police were a few months ago with a friend who had lost in a stairwell of the building

Siyonbola, who showed the police that she had a key to her room and later presented her ID, accused the officials to harass her ] "I deserve to be here," she said in the video. "I paid lessons like any other, I will not justify my existence here, it's not even a conversation."

PhD student Raquel Silva had the same reaction. "Why did she have to justify her existence in an institution where she belongs?" She asked during an interview on Wednesday. Silva suggests that the encounter would have been different if a black woman had called police to a white woman. It's about people's decisions, "she said."

Junior Vivian Dang has seen this before. "As I read the news, I immediately thought," Really? Again? "" She said. "What will it take for people of color to live comfortably, drive into their cars, study in a library, walk on campus at night, feel safe and belong – I think there are still so many obstacles. "

Lynn Cooley, the Dean of Yale's Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, sent an e-mail to PhD students on Tuesday telling them that Siyonbola had every right to be in the building and expressed her concern over the Report Incident

"Incidents like those of last night remind us of the continued work needed to make Yale a truly inclusive place," she wrote. "I commit to step up our efforts to build a supportive community in which all graduate students achieve their intellectual goals and professional goals in a welcoming environment."

Dang said the problem goes far beyond Yale and said discussions about racial incidents – such as those on campus and the recent treatment of three black customers at a Starbucks in Philadelphia – are an important first step.

Chumo, the Kenyan student, said her experience of America was dramatically different from that in her native country. In Kenya, virtually everyone is black, but as a minority in Yale, prejudice was easy to spot. So she was not shocked by Siyonbola's treatment.

"I'm not surprised, I'm really not surprised, I do not think a color student is surprised," said Chumo. "When this happens, a video is shared and a story is made, but then it just happens again."

An Associated Press report is included in this story.


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