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Campus Diversity Safe Spaces VS Brave Spaces

Political ideology, social beliefs, triggering events and shifts in the power structure have the populations at large clearly divided among strong partisan lines. Contemporary communication methods like social media where voices on any side of a debate can be amplified by all the participants in said debate help define these divides even more. College campuses are not immune to this environment, and because campuses have traditionally been a format for the expression and exchange of ideas, these beliefs can often time be on full display in common areas and lecture halls throughout the school. In response to this phenomenon, a number of schools have deemed certain areas of the campus and in some instances the entire campus as a "Safe Space". The loose definition of which is an area where a student(s) can occupy learn and thrive without being encountered by speech or action that they or society at large may deem offensive. The proliferation of Safe spaces on campuses all over the US and backlash from those who believe providing these type of spaces only help divide even more have led some university officials to also consider areas known as "Brave Spaces". Brave Spaces would be loosely defined as designated areas where ideas and philosophies from all viewpoints can be shared in a civilized manner with the implication that although you may not agree with the viewpoint or even find it offensive, you acknowledge the right of individuals or groups to express said point without interruption or disturbance. College officials who are striving towards or struggling with campus diversity and inclusion must consider a number of factors when establishing safe or brave spaces on campus including but not limited to groups of students current and perspective who may be included or excluded by these designations. Ground rules for both types of spaces. They must also consider a concurrent plan of bridging the divide while creating these spaces for people to be heard and or feel safe.

Daniel Gutzmore Comment

Colleges, campus diversity, inclusion, recruitment


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