UW News

May 10, 2024

University statement on encampment and counter-protest on Sunday

The following is a statement from the University of Washington regarding the encampment protest in the Quad and a planned counter-protest on Sunday:

University of Washington leadership has been engaging with representatives of the encampment in the Quad for over a week to find common ground that would result in their voluntary decamping. These efforts continue. The University has a long history of engagement with students on issues that they care deeply about. These discussions are not always easy, but they are essential to learning, understanding, and collective action.

Every day the encampment remains, the security concerns escalate and become more serious – for our UW community and for the people in the encampment itself. The University is aware of a counter-protest being organized this Sunday that gives us significant concern because of the likelihood for confrontations. We have repeatedly conveyed our concerns about these risks to encampment organizers and to those who organize counter-protests. We are grateful to all, including leadership in the Jewish community, who are working to deescalate the situation. We also welcome the efforts of Muslim and Palestinian leaders who are working to deescalate.

The University’s response to students’ call for change will not be based on an encampment. It will be through constructive engagement on issues that are important or meaningful to our students and broader campus community. We call on members to dismantle the encampment voluntarily for everyone’s safety and continue constructive engagement for collective action.

This post was updated on May 11.