Black Liberty employees resign in protest over years of “racial trauma”

Local News

LYNCHBURG, Va. (WFXR) — Several black employees have resigned in recent days, in the wake of a tweet by Jerry Falwell, Jr. many believe is racist. However, for the employees who quit, the tweet was just a symbol of what they say they experienced at Liberty University for years.

“Jerry’s tweet is the tip of the iceberg,” said Quan McLaurin.

For a few years now, McLaurin has worked in Liberty’s office of Equity and Inclusion as the Director of Diversity Retention.

When asked if he has come across challenges from university leadership when it comes to retaining diverse student populations, he laughed and said, “Are you kidding? Of course I have!”

McLaurin says he would often get shut down when trying to advocate for students.

“There is no strategic plan for diversity, equity, inclusion, or access at the university for its students, faculty, and staff.”

A spokesperson for the university did not respond to WFXR’s request for comment.

McLaurin is one of several black employees who resigned in recent days.

“Not only his tweets, just years of buildup since I’ve been at Liberty University,” said Keyvon Scott, who resigned on Monday as an admissions counselor. “We’re tired, and something has to change around the world and even at Liberty as well.”

For Scott, Falwell’s twitter apology on Monday doesn’t feel genuine.

“Honestly, I feel the only reason he made the apology was his back was against the wall,” he said. “There’s like a petition going around because they want him to be removed.”

McLaurin says Falwell’s tweet speaks to a larger issue.

“If anybody thinks that his tweet is the start or the end of it, then they’re very mistaken and they haven’t been watching.”

McLaurin said many other employees have shared their desire to resign as well, but they’re worried about finances. So far, McLaurin has raised more than $5,000 to support employees who leave the University due to racial trauma.

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