Fall Semester UBIT Report Summary

Addressing hate and bias incidents through inclusivity


photo courtesy of UWP Communications

The University Bias Incident Team (UBIT) presented the statistics from the past fall semester on Jan. 25. The meeting was held at 3 p.m. in the University South Room at the Markee Pioneer Student Center.

The meeting began with attendees introducing themselves and stating their reason for being there. More people were in attendance compared to the last UBIT meeting that took place earlier fall semester.

The UBIT then described who they were and explained that they have a “membership with diverse members across campus.” Many of the departments on the UW-Platteville campus have a member of staff on UBIT.

The UBIT process starts when a student or staff member submits a UBIT report from the UW-Platteville website. All members of UBIT see the report after it is submitted, and from there the report is evaluated for attention or urgency.

If it is determined to be non-urgent reports, the team meets once a week to discuss trends and current progress in the submitted reports.

The fall 2022 UBIT findings reported that the three categories most targeted for hate and bias incidents were gender, disability and transgender identity. The total number of reports decreased by 11% from the fall of 2019 and decreased by 50% from the fall of 2021.

The UBIT team did note that incidents targeting disability increased by 66.66% compared to the fall of 2019 and 50% compared to the fall 2021 semester. Most of these incidents took place in a residence hall, university building or on university grounds.

UBIT has many ways of responding to incidents such as informing other departments around campus. Last semester, UW-Platteville took university-wide action by sending out an email about hate bias to the campus community.

Following the statistics and other sections of the UBIT presentation, the team set aside time for a table talk. The table talk provided time for participants to discuss examples of where they see diversity and inclusion and how they could individually contribute to making UW-Platteville a more inclusive campus.

Each participant was asked to take two sticky notes and write down what they could do to become more inclusive and culturally aware of others. This was our call to action: how to show inclusivity and acceptability on an individual level.

An attendee of this meeting raised a concern about the victim’s safety during the UBIT process. Sometimes people do not feel safe even after filing a UBIT as they still see the offender walking around campus. The victim is not informed of any actions the UBIT team takes against the offender as doing so is a violation of HIPPA laws.

Many times, UBIT meetings occur but conclude with no concrete actions for an individual to take part in.

The UBIT team closed the meeting with this reminder: “Hate is not a UWP value”.