UNF students demand action after Snapchat video allegedly mocked Black Lives Matter rally

by: Deanna Bettineschi, Action News Jax Updated:

University of North Florida students are demanding action against what they call a racist culture on campus.

Students held a study-in outside UNF President John Delaney’s office Monday to raise awareness about the issue.

One of their main topics was a Snapchat video that they believe shows a student mocking a recent Black Lives Matter rally.

Dozens of students gathered on campus to “take a knee” in solidarity with NFL player protests and ask administration for more representation of African American culture — including an African-American studies program.

The video was posted to Snapchat with the caption, "What actually went on at the BML rally," which many say meant "Black Lives Matter."

“We feel like it’s not being dealt with," student Tionna Seabrook said. "We have a high amount of racism on this campus and we're not being heard."

The president of UNF sent out a statement last week saying the university is conducting a full investigation into the video but students say a punishment hasn’t come quickly enough. 

“We don’t want to have to keep campaigning for racism to not be a thing," Seabrook said. "It shouldn’t be a thing already."

Delaney came to talk with students at the sit-in but many said they want to see action.

“In regards to investigating and probing more, what’s there left to probe?” student Monique Williamson said.

Students also want more diversity on campus in both students and staff. They said they want African American studies on campus to educate the student body. UNF currently offers an African-American studies/Diaspora minor.

Students say they believe they were heard at Monday's sit-in but they hope action will follow.

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