University of Toronto Must Atone
We here, the undersigned, endorse these demands: 1. University of Toronto deliver a public acknowledgement and apology to African students for its role in supporting and sustaining Apartheid South Africa. 2. Reparations for African students in the form of free and unfettered access to education. REPARATIONS RALLY When: Thursday, September 18, 2008 Where: University of Toronto, Simcoe Hall, 27 King\'s College Circle On September 18, 2008, Black students and our allies will converge at the University of Toronto\'s Simcoe Hall in a peaceful assembly. The purpose of this demonstration is: 1) to raise consciousness on the adverse impact of rising tuition on African students; 2) push forward the just demand of reparations for African students; 3) to expose the University of Toronto\'s past support for Apartheid South Africa; and call on U of T to acknowledge and take responsibility for its part in the heinous crime of apartheid. Background: The University of Toronto invested 5.5 million dollars in Apartheid South Africa, which directly contributed to the ongoing economic, political, psychological and social damages of African people. Thousands of Black students protested apartheid and hundreds were killed in what is now known as the Soweto Uprisings. Still, U of T continued to invite white South African government Ministers to the university at the height of the boycott apartheid movement. Choosing economic wealth over freedom and democracy was a travesty of justice, which today, is directly related to the chronic under-representation of Black students and the enduring systemic barriers Eurocentric curricula and tuition fees impose on our community. The growing global movement for reparations targets corporations and nations who benefited from apartheid, the trans-atlantic slave trade and colonization. The University of Toronto continues to invest in corporations with well-documented examples of exploitation of Africans and other oppressed peoples. We add our voice to the loudening chorus calling for: reparations in the form of free education for black students to alleviate the consequences of historical deprivations; divestment from corporations linked to the exploitation of Africans and other oppressed peoples; and that U of T adopt the example from Harvard University who recently announced that undergraduate students from low-income families will pay no tuition. We will vigorously demonstrate our collective opposition to rising tuition which only further exasperates the precarious position of Black students. Education is a right not a commodity. Join the growing movement for accessible education and support African students\' call for reparations. Join us September 18 to kick-off the year with consciousness, culture and action.