Anti-Asian Hate Incident at J. Willard Marriott Library


Current Status:
Monitoring

Although this situation may not be ongoing actively, the Racist & Bias Incident Response Team is working with appropriate departments to monitor and prevent future reoccurrence. Those who believe they have been the target of bias, intolerance or discrimination may report an incident to the public incident report form (bias and intolerance) or the Office of Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action (sexual misconduct and discrimination).

Please direct any questions or concerns in regard to this bias incident to the Special Assistant to the Chief Safety Officer at RBIresponse@utah.edu.

What happened

On November 10, 2022, a staff member, who is Malaysian American and who works in the J. Willard Marriot Library, was using a microwave in the library’s public café area, when a public visitor (not student, staff, or faculty) approached and told him to “go back to his country because this was the land of the free and the home of the brave.” The employee reported the incident to the Library Operations and Protection Services team, who reported it to the University of Utah Police Department. UUPD responded and asked the individual to leave and not return to the library or campus.

What is being done

The incident has been reported to the university’s Office of Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action (OEO/AA), the Office of the Dean of Students Conduct teams, the Racist and Bias Incident Response Team, and University of Utah Police. The individual who reported has also been connected to support services that are available on campus.

What to do

Be vigilant, speak up, and stand up for others. Stopping this type of behavior takes collective action, and bystander intervention efforts are one way of combatting such conduct that causes real harm. To learn more about how to incorporate bystander intervention into your toolkit, check out the information here: https://wellness.utah.edu/workshops-training/#bystander.

The Marriott Library strives to provide a safe environment for visitors and employees and to preserve and protect the facilities and collections. Library patrons play an important role in creating a positive quality of life and experience in the library. All patrons, including public visitors, are expected to be familiar with and abide by all library and University policies. If you notice any suspicious activity or feel your safety is being threatened while in the library, please report the incident immediately to University of Utah Police at 801-585-2677. Additionally, you may seek assistance by contacting Library Operations & Protection Services at 801-581-8600 or by visiting the nearest library service desk.

If you are interested in learning more about the variety of resources the U offers to support diversity and inclusion, please visit the Office of the Dean of Students in the Union Building, Room 270, deanofstudents@utah.edu, 801-581-7066, or Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion in the Park Building, Room 208, or https://diversity.utah.edu/our-team/. To make a report of a racist or bias incident, visit the public reporting form

The U condemns hate and is committed to equity, diversity and inclusion

This act, specifically targeted against a staff member of our Asian community, in a public space, is rooted in the hateful act of striking fear among our community members. These targeted acts, in the context of increased anti-Asian hate incidents around the country, and on our own campus, leave our Asian students, staff and faculty feeling overwhelmed, exhausted, angry, and continuously on edge. While we work to ensure that they can find a place of safety and belonging as a part of our campus community, we know that is not enough.  We will continue to name the racist acts, investigate, and hold the perpetrators accountable when they are identified. We cannot tolerate what is intolerable.  Additionally, we will continue to proactively implement efforts that uplift and celebrate our communities as we witness an increasing number of racist acts on our campus and across the nation. This is the time to draw together and call out these acts when we see them.

Questions & Concerns

For any questions or concerns in regard to this bias incident, please contact Brian Jay Nicholls, Special Assistant to the Chief Safety Officer, at RBIresponse@utah.edu.

For additional reporting information, please feel free to visit here.

Response process
Support Resources

If you are currently in a situation where immediate medical, police or other emergency services are needed, call 911 or University Emergency Communications at 801-585-2677 (801-585-COPS). To file a complaint regarding discrimination or sexual harassment, contact the Office of Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action (OEO/AA) at 801-581-8365.

Support & resources
Report a Bias Incident

Any act of intolerance, motivated wholly or in part by bias or prejudice against an individual’s race, color, ethnicity, age, religion, size, disability, national origin, language, gender, veteran status, identity expression, sexual orientation or age—regardless of severity—can be reported using this form.

Submit a report