As University of Alberta students work through the first half of an unprecedented year of study, the Alberta Public Interest Reseach Group (APIRG) stands in firm solidarity with all students working to build a campus experience where queer, trans, and non-binary students are respected, are valued, and can feel safe participating in campus life.
Therefore, we encourage the Faculty of Arts and Department of Anthropology to continue listening to students who voice their safety concerns. We encourage the university to work with students and take all necessary steps to mitigate the violence and harm created by Dr. Kathleen Lowrey through her ignorance of established critical gender theory and other problematic statements detailed by students.
We fully support the UAAU‘s assertion that no student “should be forced to navigate an environment where they feel unwelcome and forced to defend themselves against faculty members within the classroom, especially department representatives, who believe that trans rights are anti-feminist and akin to supporting notions of patriarchy.”
At its best, education is about curiosity. Our hope for University of Alberta students is that they can practise this curiosity in a stimulating, supportive, and safe environment. This is impossible while professors can misuse the concept of academic freedom to teach views that are transphobic or trivialize students’ lived experience.
Finally, to all of the students who are working tirelessly to advocate for a safe learning environment: you are powerful, smart, and tremendously impressive. APIRG stands with you and we are here to help.
Please email firstname.lastname@example.org with any requests for support or solidarity.