CW: Racism, Sexism, Misogyny, References to Sexual Violence.
The University of York Hockey Club have been condemned by officials within the University of York and beyond over the Conduct of their members during Wednesday Night’s “Grafitti” Social. The ‘Social’ Event involved wearing of T-shirts containing offensive, unacceptable, and disrespectful language that held no restraints. The club went from using Hitler moustaches and crudely drawn swastikas to truly shocking written statements not limited to, “Allu Akbah, Twin Towers FTW”, “I spank [derogatory term for women]”, and “I’m really into black girls and their [expletive]”, as well as multiple abhorrent anti-semitic comments.
Racist and Misogynistic Language On T-shirts:
Eye witnesses for York Vision came across the shameful social at 9 pm in The Lounge Bar on Heslington Campus West and were able to document the club’s misconduct in full. Some students sought to amend their offensive language and imagery by taking such actions as turning swastikas into boxes and mitigating horrendous statements with “is a false statement” afterwards, but by then the damage had been done.
BAME Officer Afoma Ojukwu was among the first to call out the Hockey Club for their actions, stating ““The Hockey Social has exhibited disgraceful behaviour and aspects of lad culture that we should have been long since past”
Offensive Imagery and Language On T-shirts:
Sports socials wearing offensive costumes is nothing new, in 2014 Vision exposed similarly offensive content that was published on Hockey Club’s Twitter Feed – the individuals involved were suspended from the Union. However this week’s social has highlighted how York continues to exhibit the negative and ignorant side of lad culture.
The incident comes after Hockey Club’s participation in the Respect The Rose Campaign last April, agreeing to ““impeccable conduct on and off the pitch from all our competitors and supporters.” – the club may need to undergo significant cultural shifts if they hope to sign us a pledge for Roses 2018.
Hitler Moustaches & Anti-Semitic and Misogynistic Language On T-shirts:
University of York Hockey Club apologised for their club’s conduct: “We offer our sincerest apology at the offence this incident has caused. We deeply regret that these events happened however, this incident doesn’t reflect the values of most of the members of our club. We are a diverse and inclusive club and condemn in the strongest terms such behaviour.”
A spokesperson for the University of York Students’ Union (YUSU) told Vision “”YUSU has received complaints about serious misconduct from students . We do not tolerate misogynistic, racist, discriminatory behaviour of any form. YUSU has launched an immediate investigation into the incident and appropriate action will be taken; we are liaising closely with the University and North Yorkshire Police as required. YUSU would like to apologise to anyone impacted by this incident; we expect the highest possible standards of conduct from all members.”
The University of York issued the following a statement to Vision:
“The University has been made aware of images which show a number of people wearing t-shirts daubed with highly offensive slogans and symbols.
“An investigation has been launched but we believe the individuals involved are our students taking part in a social event.
“The matter is considered so serious it has been reported to North Yorkshire Police by the University and students’ union.
“The University has a zero-tolerance policy towards racist, sexist or bigoted behaviour, and we apologise unreservedly for the offence caused.
“Any students who are found to have breached the University’s code of conduct will face disciplinary measures.
“We are committed to promoting diversity and equality on campus and creating a positive environment which is fair, welcoming and inclusive.”
North Yorkshire Police have confirmed to Vision “North Yorkshire Police has received a complaint relating to t-shirts with offensive slogans written on them worn by young people while on a night out in York. The matter was reported on Friday 13 October and relates to the evening of Wednesday 11 October 2017.”
North Yorkshire Police ask that anyone who has any information about the incident call North Yorkshire Police on 101 to assist them with ongoing investigations.