Managing Campus Protests and Demonstrations at Historically Black Colleges and Universities

Publication Date: 2018
Abstract: From the Civil Rights movement of the 50s and 60s to today's Black Lives Matter movement, students and faculty at Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU) have been at the vanguard of social reforms that change America. This powerful and enduring legacy was on the minds of the HBCU participants attending a national forum, and it prompted the following question: Are protests and demonstrations at HBCUs fundamentally different from predominantly white institutions? In July 2017, at the 18th Annual Historically Black Colleges and Universities & Law Enforcement Executives and Administrators Training Conference, campus police and safety officials from across the country convened to identify challenges and potential solutions in managing protests and demonstrations on HBCU campuses. The officials were seeking to ensure that campus law enforcement policies and practices around protests and demonstrations are not only more effective, but also preserve the traditional role of HBCU campuses as centers of activism, engagement, and dissent. Key takeaways and conclusions from the forum discussions constitute the principal findings of this report.