Two New York state agencies will investigate racist messages found inside a Syracuse University residence hall, Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced Monday.
Cuomo directed the New York State Police Hate Crimes Task Force and the state Division of Human Rights to launch an inquiry after students found racial slurs written in Day Hall.
The Daily Orange reported that the N-word was written in multiple spots inside a sixth-floor bathroom. A slur targeting Asians was on a fourth-floor bulletin board.
The racist graffiti was reported Thursday to Syracuse University's Department of Public Safety, according to Robert Hradsky, the school's vice president for the student experience.
"I'm disgusted by the recent rash of hateful language found scrawled on the walls at Syracuse University, where students from around the world are drawn each year in the pursuit of higher learning," Cuomo said. "These types of hateful and bigoted actions seek to splinter and segregate our communities, and they have no place in New York — period."
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In a letter to faculty, staff and students, Hradsky wrote that school officials — Keith Alford, chief diversity and inclusion officer; Bobby Maldonado, chief of the Department of Public Safety; and Marianne Thomson, dean of students — met with students living on the fourth and sixth floors of Day Hall to discuss the racist graffiti. Hradsky also expressed regret for "not communicating more broadly."
Syracuse University advised students interested in counseling services may contact Barnes Center at The Arch by calling (315) 443-8000. The center is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Bias-related incidents can be reported on the school's STOP Bias website.
The investigation is ongoing, Hradsky said. Anyone with information about the racist graffiti should contact the Department of Public Safety at (315) 443-2224. You may submit an anonymous tip by using the agency's Silent Witness tool.
"We condemn all racist language and actions," Hradsky added. "We remain focused on being a welcoming and inclusive campus environment, free of intolerance, bigotry and prejudice."