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Message from Laurie M. Schnarr, Vice-Provost (Students)

February 29, 2024 — 

On Monday, February 26 a student-led event was held on campus during which interactions and views expressed by the featured speaker were in direct opposition to the values upheld by the University of Manitoba.

UM denounces Islamophobia and all forms of discrimination, harassment and prejudice against individuals or groups based on their race, nationality, ethnicity or religion as supported by our Respectful Work and Learning Environment (RWLE) policy and the safety of students is of utmost priority.

We met with UMSU and will respect UMSU’s decision to ban Mr. Bassem Eid from UMSU spaces.

The University is committed to ensuring that students feel heard and valued and actively engage with those who express concerns or complaints, working with them to address issues. As a result, I am meeting with individual students and student groups involved in and directly impacted by this event and these conversations are ongoing.

As an academic institution, UM believes in the power of education, dialogue, and the sharing of diverse perspectives. It is essential that this occurs in a manner that is respectful, and grounded in a mutual commitment to the dignity, safety and well-being of others.

The Listening, Learning, Leading series, organized by UM’s Office of Equity Transformation, is one part of a broader strategy that envisions social change based in human dignity and empathy, and engages people in discourse respectfully.

All events in this series follow community accountability guidelines, with speakers and audience members agreeing to:

  • Listen for insight
  • Appreciate complexity
  • Engage with respect the viewpoint of the speaker(s)
  • Question for understanding, rather than to confront or challenge
  • Value dialogue
  • Debate ideas not the person
  • Hold human dignity for all
  • Allow speakers to be in spaces of listening and learning with each other and participants
  • Carry this approach with you when you share learnings from the event

Visit the Office of Equity Transformation website for information about upcoming series events.

Lastly, I want to remind you that anyone who is experiencing discrimination, prejudice, or disrespectful behaviours in breach of the RWLE policy should not hesitate to reach out to the Office of Human Rights and Conflict Management.

We are here to support you and to ensure that the University of Manitoba remains a place of respect, inclusivity and understanding.



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