Small group of students protest UMN administration at Coffman

The students called for an end to the UMPD and tuition increases, and for the University to defend DACA.

<p>A banner hangs outside Coffman Memorial Union on Wednesday, Sept. 13.</p>

Nick Wicker

A banner hangs outside Coffman Memorial Union on Wednesday, Sept. 13.

Kevin Beckman

A small group of students stood in front of Coffman Memorial Union Wednesday afternoon to protest a list of perceived failures by the University of Minnesota administration during the school’s annual activities fair. 

About 10 students, who declined to give their names, stood on Coffman’s steps, holding one banner that read “We all belong here” and another that called on the University to abolish the University Police Department, stop tuition increases and defend Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals.

The second banner also called on the University to support faculty unionization and “kill rape culture.” 

The demonstrators said the school isn’t tough enough on alleged rapists.

The students also called on the University to increase funding for ethnic and gender studies and place more effort on sexual assault prevention. 

In the past two weeks, Kaler has sent out two different all-campus statements vowing support for DACA recipients, and plans to finalize an initiative to combat sexual misconduct.  

The banners were originally tied to the columns in front of Coffman, but Student Unions and Activities staff asked they be taken down, due to University policy. 

Three UMPD officers were present at the demonstration, which protestors said made them feel “unwelcome.” 

SUA did not call for the officers, said University spokesperson Steve Henneberry. The officers may have been patrolling for the activities fair being held in front of Coffman.