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UM System President Apologizes for Behavior With Student Group

tim wolfe
Janet Saidi
/
KBIA
Timothy Wolfe takes questions from reporters after being introduced as the new president of the University of Missouri system.

University of Missouri System President Tim Wolfe issued an apology Friday for his behavior with the group Concerned Student 1950.

Members of the group blocked his car during the homecoming parade in protest of how the administration has handled incidents of racism at MU. Wolfe also notes in his apology that he has met with graduate student Jonathan Butler, who has been on a hunger strike calling for Wolfe’s resignation or removal.

Read Wolfe’s apology below:

Today I again had the opportunity to meet with MU graduate student Jonathan Butler who continues a hunger strike protesting the inequalities, inequities, and obstacles faced by students, faculty and staff at the University of Missouri. I am very concerned about Jonathan’s health. His voice for social justice is important and powerful. He is being heard and I am listening. I am thankful for the leadership provided by him and the other student leaders in raising awareness of racism, injustice, and intolerance. This afternoon I also met with representatives of several student groups and I value their input and hear their voices. Racism does exist at our university and it is unacceptable. It is a long-standing, systemic problem which daily affects our family of students, faculty and staff. I am sorry this is the case. I truly want all members of our university community to feel included, valued and safe. I regret my reaction at the MU homecoming parade when the ConcernedStudent1950 group approached my car. I am sorry, and my apology is long overdue. My behavior seemed like I did not care. That was not my intention. I was caught off guard in that moment. Nonetheless, had I gotten out of the car to acknowledge the students and talk with them perhaps we wouldn’t be where we are today. I am asking us to move forward in addressing the racism that exists at our university – and it does exist. Together we must rise to the challenge of combatting racism, injustice, and intolerance.

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