On Oct. 7, Illinois State University’s Black Homecoming Committee held a rally to protest unfair treatment and voice its experiences with fake diversity at ISU.

There was an editorial piece written entitled “BHC rally: Issue facts and figures” by The Vidette.

Some of the issues that folks within the #AntiblackISU movement spoke on as well as the demands that were made involved the University Program Board.

Now we understand that an editorial is just the author’s opinions, but we felt compelled to speak to this issue and the editorial.

UPB finds it important to note that this event and the ensuing editorial happened a while ago, but as an organization we still felt compelled to speak about the issue because of how important the topic is.

Anti-blackness can’t be and won’t be fixed overnight, so we don’t believe there’s such a thing as responding too late as this will always be a salient issue at this university for the foreseeable future.

That is why UPB is working and will continue to work internally to make UPB a better space, to make our programming more intentional and to ensure every student feels valued, welcome, heard and is treated fairly.

UPB would like to respond directly to the editorial by saying that it does indeed recognize that UPB is a traditionally majority white organization.

We recognize how difficult it can be for minority students to enter those spaces and feel supported. This is a fact that we hope to change moving forward as UPB is looking for ways to change internally that might encourage and foster a more inclusive space for all students on campus.

We are the prominent event planning entity for student-driven programs on ISU’s campus.

We strive to plan events that are focused on social, cultural, educational, and recreational growth at Illinois State.

Come spring semester, UPB will be moving to a new office in the Bone on the second floor near where the Barnes & Noble used to be across from Tech Zone.

Our office space is always open to any students who want to learn how to become a member of UPB.

While we are continuing to educate and program for all students on campus, we are always welcoming of any student from underrepresented groups to join UPB and make it that much more inclusive.

We encourage any and all students to join UPB or to interview for a board position in February.

Most of all, UPB applauds the students behind the #AntiblackISU movement and we look forward to collaborating with them going forward.

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