#YaleWhileBlack: Yale Dean issues response about Black grad student questioned by cops for napping in dorm
The graduate student has gotten support from alum and current students on social media.
Since Yale teaching fellow Lolade Siyonbola shared videos of being confronted by her neighbor and police officers in campus housing, she has received an outpouring of support.
The videos Siyonbola shared on Facebook showed her neighbor berating her for sleeping in a common area of their residence hall and then police officers questioning if Siyonbola “belonged” in the building at all.
The graduate student took to Facebook to thank everyone for their support.
“Grateful for all the love, kind words and prayers, your support has been overwhelming
Black Yale community is beyond incredible and is taking good care of me. I know this incident is a drop in the bucket of trauma Black folk have endured since Day 1 America, and you all have stories. Share below if you feel led. xo”
Yale Dean’s Response
According to the Yale News, Graduate School of Arts and Sciences Dean Lynn Cooley sent out an email earlier this week to all masters and Phd students.
“Incidents like that of last night remind us of the continued work needed to make Yale a truly inclusive place. I am committed to redoubling our efforts to build a supportive community in which all graduate students are empowered in their intellectual pursuits and professional goals within a welcoming environment. An essential part of that effort must be a commitment to mutual respect and an open dialog.”
Outside of the Yale community, Siyonbola has also seen support. The Connecticut chapter of the ACLU tweeted about her story.
“Sleeping in your dorm while Black shouldn’t result in being questioned by police. Students of color should be able to use common spaces on their college campuses without fear of being racially profiled.
#YaleWhileBlack,” they wrote, using the hashtag that Black Yale students have been using to detail their campus experiences.
Sleeping in your dorm while Black shouldn’t result in being questioned by police. Students of color should be able to use common spaces on their college campuses without fear of being racially profiled. #YaleWhileBlackhttps://t.co/RX4WNGBa8U
— ACLU of Connecticut (@acluct) May 8, 2018
Other Twitter users have also shown support.
Just learned the young woman who had to face the police for being at #YaleWhileBlack is a grad student in my old department there. @yalegsas, I & other alums look forward to hearing what you’ll be doing to ensure that HGS residents of color are protected from racist co-residents.
— Laura Seay (@texasinafrica) May 9, 2018
— Lauren Young (@thatlaurenyoung) May 8, 2018
The young lady @Yale should really sue & get a public apology from the Institute & campus police for having her standing in the hall like a criminal while the ignorant grad student who false reported was in the comfort of her home. #YaleWhileBlack
— MickiM (@mickimousesc) May 9, 2018
@Yale I think you need to respond to the horrific footage of a @yalegsas student being surrounded by three police officers and forced to prove that she belonged in the space after unlocking her door. #Yalewhileblack https://t.co/zF7pbpH6fY
— Louisa Brown (@louisa_fe) May 8, 2018
Dear Racist White Woman,
Seriously, stop calling the police on Black people for simply existing. Being Black in America is not a crime. I am sorry you feel uncomfortable and fragile in the presence of #BlackExcellence, but it’s no excuse to call the police #YaleWhileBlack pic.twitter.com/TqpJntgYax
— Ronnie Sidney II (@ronniesidneyii) May 9, 2018
Siyonbola and the Yale press office have not yet responded to a request for comment.