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SUNY urged to counter ‘expressions of hate’

ALBANY — The union representing employees of the State University of New York has voted to press the administration and the Faculty Senate to take action “to counter any and all expressions of hate” in the 64-campus system after the Nov. 8 presidential election.

The vote by the United University Professions executive board follows reports of racist and anti-Muslim messages statewide, the union announced this week. The union did not propose specific measures.

The union called on “our campuses, communities, and our nation to come together in vigilant support of inclusion, of pluralism, and of diversity.”

Frederick E. Kowal, president of United University Professions, said that “throughout our history, the higher education community has stood as a sanctuary for students from diverse backgrounds to come together and to learn from each other. It is not a place to sew misunderstanding and hatred. We must stand up and reject hate, racism, sexism and xenophobia.”

Graffiti including “Make America White Again” have been reported in upstate New York and in New York City. Nazi swastikas have been found in Port Washington and Patchogue.

Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo and New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio have called for a halt to such actions. Cuomo has deployed state employees to staff a hotline while state Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman has issued guidance to local police in investigating and prosecuting hate crimes.

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