Office of the Vice President for Global Communications

Friday, October 12, 2012

Dean calls Haven Hall vandalism 'cowardly and anti-intellectual'

LSA Dean Terry McDonald called the vandalism of bulletin boards and office doors in Haven Hall, "deplorable, cowardly, and anti-intellectual." The vandalism took place overnight Monday.

Both McDonald and Provost Phil Hanlon sent messages to the university community Thursday regarding the incident.

The Department of Public Safety continues to investigate the case and will increase patrols in Haven Hall in the days ahead, said Diane Brown, DPS public information officer. So far, she said, DPS investigators have no indication the vandalism was targeted.

McDonald sent an email message to those who work in Haven Hall Thursday. He reported that no witnesses to the vandalism had yet come forward and no one was injured in the incident. His message said fliers, posters and some personal items were removed from some faculty doors and nearby bulletin boards. 

"Some, but not all of the materials removed dealt with issues around or events concerning race, gender, and sexuality," McDonald's message said.

"I am so sorry that this incident has caused some of us to feel harassed, violated, or unsafe.  I can assure you that stern action will be taken if the perpetrator(s) of these acts can be discovered."

Hanlon also sent an email message Thursday to faculty and staff to underscore the universitywide values of tolerance, acceptance, diversity and mutual respect.

"I reaffirm these values today in light of an incident of systematic vandalism throughout at least four floors of Haven Hall overnight Monday," his message read. "This act of destruction and intolerance is not Michigan. Michigan is the sharing of diverse viewpoints and ideas in a safe environment grounded in mutual respect."

"The intellectual activity occurring every day in Haven Hall and throughout our campus is cause for celebration and admiration, not defacement, intimidation or harassment."