In response to violent actions taken by police against protesters at multiple University of California campuses in the last few weeks, UC President Mark Yudof convened a meeting of chancellors Monday to reinforce the need to protect campus community members and their right to peaceful protest.
Yudof met all 10 UC chancellors via a teleconference meeting, during which he reiterated that he was appalled by images of students being doused with pepper spray at UC Davis and jabbed with batons at UC Berkeley, according to a press release. He called for actions to be taken to examine use of force at campuses, according to the release.
“We cannot let this happen again,” Yudof said at the meeting, according to the release.
Moving forward, Yudof has directed senior UC Office of the President staff to examine recent incidents involving the use of force on UC campuses, to organize a thorough examination of police procedure and training and to establish recommendations for long term practices that ensure the safety of UC community members, the release states.
Additionally, according to the press release, Yudof is directing senior staff to work with campus police chiefs to bring together policies governing use of force as well as requirements for the presence of senior administrators and observers in certain situations.
Police violence against protesters at UC campuses in the last few weeks has drawn strong condemnation from concerned individuals and groups both in and out of the UC.
In a message to the UC community released the same day as Yudof’s meeting with the chancellors, UC Board of Regents Chair Sherry Lansing expressed her shock at the events and reiterated Yudof’s call for protection of UC community members.
“We regents share your passion and your conviction for the University of California,” Lansing said in the video statement. “We want all of you to know that we fully and unequivocally support your right to protest peacefully.”