School administrator apologizes for using word 'non-urban' following public outcry

Campus Reform Reporter

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A dean at Roger Williams University School of Law (RWU Law) apologized for using the word ‘urban’ in a school-wide email about crime, after students commented on social media calling her phrasing offensive.

RWU Law Assistant Dean of Students Lorraine Lalli sent out an end of semester email last Wednesday morning which warned students not to leave out valuables because “[d]espite the non-urban nature of our campus, thefts have occurred.”

Approximately two hours later, Lalli sent out a follow up email apology acknowledging “concerns about the choice of language [.]”

“While I did not draft this language, I did review it before it was sent," he wrote. "Upon reflection, I agree that this language is insensitive and I will revise it for future messages. I apologize for any offense that this may have caused."

Michael Bowden, a spokesman for RWU, told Campus Reform through email yesterday that Lalli responded in order to clear up any confusion regarding her original email.

“After sending the email, Dean Lalli noticed a few student comments on Facebook about her choice of language, which prompted her to revisit it,” wrote Bowden.

"Her follow-up note was simply that; upon re-reading her reminder e-mail, she saw how the language could have been misinterpreted, and wanted to let anyone concerned know that it would be revised in future mailings,” Bowden added.

Bowden could not confirm to Campus Reform which part of the email students found offensive, but said the school considers the matter closed as there have been no additional complaints.

Follow the author of this article on Twitter: @TimPDion

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