BAME officer receives ‘stop being a gay n*****’ on student feedback form

LUSU have said they ‘will not tolerate’ it

Lancaster University Students’ Union BME officer, Max Kafula, opened a feedback form for students to give him feedback on his work with the SU. Today Max posted to Facebook that he would no longer be accepting any responses after receiving responses calling him “A GAY N*****”.

In the status, Max said: “While I want to thank everyone who submitted precious feedback on what I can do to improve, unfortunately, I will no longer be accepting any more responses.”

Max continues to quote the responses. On the form, Max asked students if they did not have confidence in him, what could he do to improve it. Two of the responses included “STOP BEING A GAY N*****” and “stop being a zionist shill.”

Max also asked what students felt he should do the remainder of his term, and got the response: “Stop selling out to the illegitimate state of Israel”.
In his status, Max said: “This is not only outright homophobic, racist and antisemitic, but it is also absolutely disgusting. No one should even have these views.
“These comments have been flagged up and will be dealt with.”
Max told The Tab Lancaster that he wanted to “self check” on his work to see whether “people think I’m doing the right thing, and if I’m not, I would like to know what I was doing wrong before going down the wrong route.

“The survey was designed to be anonymous, cause I wanted people to be brutally honest with me. Unfortunately, I guess people went too brutal.”

Whilst going through the responses, Max said he “saw disturbing responses” that he felt  “were not even criticisms but explicit racist, antisemitic and homophobic abuses against me.”

“I was taken aback by it”, he continued. “The fact someone felt it was necessary to use such hateful and disgusting words, wanted to personally hurt me. It was nothing to do with my work or my role, but the chance to bring me down on a personal level. The repeated use of n***** was deliberate. They knew what they were doing. They knew I would see this. They wanted me to cause destruction and chaos.”

Max added: “First thing I did, was go to the police station. It’s a hate crime. No ifs, no buts, it’s a textbook hate crime.”

Since Max’s status, Lancaster University Students’ Union released a statement saying they were “shocked, disgusted and disappointed” by the “horrific racist and homophobic abuse” Max received.

“BAME Students’ Officer Max Kafula received a number of utterly disgraceful messages this afternoon from cowardly abusers hiding behind a cloak of anonymity”, they said.

“As a Students’ Union, we wish to make clear that we do not tolerate this. It’s shameful that anyone should have to experience the kind of abuse that was sent to Max today. The identity of the person or people responsible is unknown, but it will be particularly saddening if it came from within the university community.”

LUSU also stated that the incident had been reported to the police, and expressed hope that “it will be possible to identify whoever is responsible for this attack and ensure that they face the consequences of their actions.”

Deputy Vice-Chancellor Professor Steve Bradley said: “Lancaster University is a safe inclusive place for all. While the identity of the individual behind these messages is not yet known we want to make it clear that the abuse Max received is repugnant, illegal and runs counter to our values as a University and a community.

“We offer him and LUSU our full support in ensuring he and others can go about their work free from such abuse.  We are glad to hear the matter was swiftly reported to the police and is in their hands.  Our University will not tolerate racism, homophobic abuse or hate speech of any kind and, should the individuals identified be associated with the University, we will take action of our own to ensure people at Lancaster University feel safe and are protected from abuse.”