DEI professor steps down after police remove pro-Palestinian protesters
Feminist prof quits DEI position over police response to campus encampments.

Mike Campbell

May 14, 2024

Alberta University’s Associate Dean of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) has tendered her resignation, stating that the police removal of pro-Palestinian protesters traumatized her and police have made her job impossible.

DEI professor steps down after police remove pro-Palestinian protesters

The letter comes three days after police forcefully removed protesters’ encampments that had been set up on the University’s private property, with one video revealing a police officer hitting one protester with a baton.

“Yesterday, I tendered my resignation from my role as the Faculty of Arts, Associate Dean, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion at the University of Alberta,” said Natalie Loveless, who also teaches in the Faculty of Arts.

Loveless said police were guilty of “unnecessary use of non lethal but very frightening weapons and batons.”

Loveless also said the protests “modeled solidarity between Palestinian, Jewish, and Indigenous communities and allies.” 

Similar protests have taken place across North America of late, where many have called for resistance and rebellion against Israel “Intifada,” and some protesters attempted to block students from entering campus. However, some Jewish students and orthodox Jews have expressed support for the protests.  

Loveless called on university leadership to acknowledge the inappropriate use of police force, to stop making “unsubstantiated” claims about the protesters, and to address demands for divestment from investments linked to Israeli occupation. 

“I remain extremely shaken and am still haunted by the sound of guns and the echo of the menacing chant of move, move, move from heavily armed militarized police,” she said.

Also happening on Tuesday, in an open letter, a number of law professors from the University of Calgary and Alberta University expressed concern over the police response, stating that it was an infringement of students’ rights.

On Saturday, University President Bill Flanagan said that the University would be enforcing a trespass notice with police assistance to disperse the encampment, citing safety risks, including the use of barricade materials that posed a fire hazard, and the potential for violence from the rapid escalation of the group.

On October 7, Hamas terrorists from Gaza launched a coordinated assault on Israeli civilians, killing nearly 1200 and taking about 240 hostages, including women and children.

Since then, Hamas has refused to give up most of the hostages, while Israel continues to launch a counter attack on Gaza.

The United Nations this week lowered its counts of Palestinian women and children killed since Israel began bombing Gaza to 5,000 women and 7,800 children, and overall 34,904 fatalities.

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