Local News

UNC system panel OKs hate-crimes policy

Posted January 7, 2010 5:56 p.m. EST
Updated January 7, 2010 6:52 p.m. EST

— A UNC Board of Governors committee on Thursday approved a policy for handling hate crimes on the University of North Carolina system's 16 campuses.

The uniform code of conduct, which will go before the full board next month, would prohibit actions defined by federal and state laws as hate crimes. It also would express support for free speech on campus.

A panel created by UNC President Erskine Bowles recommended the code of conduct last March. Bowles created the panel after four North Carolina State University students spray-painted racist graffiti in the campus' Free Expression Tunnel on the night President Barack Obama was elected in November 2008.

The state chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People called for the students to be expelled, but N.C. State officials said they had no grounds to do that.

The panel asked Bowles to appoint a separate task force to study whether all new students in the UNC system should be required to undergo diversity training.