Seattle University issued an SU community email message Friday afternoon addressing the finding of three swastikas drawings found on whiteboards outside the rooms of students living in one of its residence halls during the first two weeks in October.
“The swastika is a powerful symbol of hate, one that cannot be ignored, particularly around the holy days of Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur,” wrote Michele C. Murray, vice president for Student Development, and Natasha Martin, associate vice president for Institutional Inclusion and Chief Diversity Officer in an email communication to the SU community just after 2 p.m. Friday, Oct. 21.
Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year, started Sunday, Oct. 2, and ended Tuesday, Oct. 4. Yom Kippur, the Jewish Day of Atonement, was observed at sunset on Tuesday, Oct. 11. Seattle University is a Catholic Jesuit school.
“All of us are entrusted to uphold Seattle University’s core values, which are rooted in our Jesuit heritage,” the email states. “Hateful acts such as these are antithetical to our values, they violate our shared sense of decency and inclusion, and they demean the dignity of our human family.”
The email states SU’s Department of Public Safety and the Seattle Police Department were notified of these incidents, which remain under investigation.
“In addition to investigating the incidents, staff in Housing and Residence Life, Campus Ministry and the Office of Multicultural Affairs have been responding to the needs of and facilitating dialogue among the affected residential community,” the email states.