University of Louisville Apologizes over Hispanic Halloween Costumes

Steve Bittenbender, Reuters, October 30, 2015

The University of Louisville issued an apology on Thursday, after a community outcry over a photograph showing school staff, including school President James Ramsey, donning sombreros and other items associated with Hispanic culture during a party.

In a statement directed to the Hispanic and Latino faculty, staff and students, Ramsey’ office said the school will initiate diversity training immediately.

The photograph, taken at a staff luncheon, was posted on the website of Louisville’s newspaper, the Courier-Journal, along with a story about a university-owned mansion that sits vacant except for certain events, like fundraisers and staff luncheons.

The photo shows Ramsey wearing a sombrero and multi-colored poncho. Women in the image are wearing similar hats along with facial hair, while other men are wearing veils. Several people are also holding maracas.

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