We, the students, are putting forward a resolution to be voted on immediately…Whereas, Eric Kaler is incapable of continuing to lead this university.
Whereas… Eric Kaler’s incoming base salary per year was $610,000 — which is $155,000 MORE than previous U President Robert Bruininks.
Whereas….tuition costs have been doubling each decade with President Kaler approving tuition hikes and doing very little to make our land-grant institution more affordable and eventually free. The University of MN’s charter lays out the clear stipulation in Section 12:
“The admission fee to the University and the charges for
tuition in the several Departments thereof, shall be regulated and
prescribed by the Board of Regents; and as soon as in their opinion,
the income of the University fund will permit, tuition in all of the
Departments shall be without charge to all students in the same, who
are residents of the Territory.”
Whereas… President Kaler has not considered or spoken upon declaring free tuition for Indigenous students, given that the U of M is built on stolen Dakota land, and has not planned to grow on the free tuition plan for Indigenous students at the Morris
Whereas… President Kaler participated in a cover-up of gross ethical misconduct within the medical school and went as far as to sue the families of the victims, who have died as a direct result of this medical misconduct, in an effort to prevent serious investigations.
Whereas… President Kaler has hired known sexual predators to positions of authority. For example, when Norwood Teague was hired as the athletic director, Kaler explained away Teague’s harassment of his subordinates by saying, “perhaps he was over-served,” and paid out Teague’s contract.
Whereas…. President Kaler approved and protected racist actions on campus by responding to the “Build the Wall” policy by deeming it protected free speech.
Whereas… President Kaler fails to see that hate speech turns into hate action. Such is the case in the vandalism of the Muslim Student Association’s bridge panel with the words “ISIS” scrawled across it, which slanders, not only the student organization, but all Muslim identified persons on this campus as “terrorists.”
Whereas… President Kaler continues his policy of not going the distance to combat the racism on campus as evidenced by his lack of resolve to declare our campus a sanctuary. Instead, impressing that he is only willing to do things deemed “legal” in the face of a U.S. president-elect who ambitions to illegalize half of the population.
Whereas… President Kaler has not declared unconditional support for undocumented and Deferred Action students saying he would only protect them if legally allowed to.
Whereas… President Kaler, as president of the entire University system, has failed to adequately represent the students of the U of M system and has not given adequate time for students from the other campuses.
Whereas… President Kaler has pursued anti-worker policies and refused to bargain in good faith with university workers and their unions for living wages and better workplace conditions.
Whereas… President Kaler approved the use of $550,000, drawn from tuition and state money, in an attempt to sabotage the faculty unionization organizing on the Twin Cities campus.
Whereas…. President Kaler has in effect criminalized dissent at the university by charging some of the most committed and celebrated students at the U with “student code of conduct” charges and criminal charges for their actions on campus. A University administration committed to critical thinking and community engagement would immediately drop the charges against the six students arrested at the June 2016 Board of Regents meeting and instead listen to their demands and voices.
Therefore be it resolved… Eric Kaler should be removed from office immediately. A new leader should be put in place through a process involving genuine input from the campus community and the new president must be accountable to the University community, not just symbolically in verbiage, but in actuality – responsive to student, faculty, and worker power.
This accountability must be to the larger university community, instead of, as we’ve witnessed under President Kaler, accountability only to wealthy financial donors and the swollen bureaucracy of “yes men” administrators who do nothing to question misguided policies or represent the needs of students, staff, and faculty on campus.