March 3, 2017

To the UNT community,

I've spoken often of our warm, caring inclusive community, but in the last few weeks I've noticed a series of disturbing events that I believe do not reflect our values or our commitment to one another.

While we respect freedom of speech on our campus, there has been a recent series of flyers, social media posts and hostile speech directed at some members of our community because of who they are. I in no way condone this behavior.

In my years as a university administrator, I have witnessed how the actions of a handful of individuals who are attempting to provoke responses have crossed the line into threatening behavior or acts of vandalism. We will not tolerate this on our campus, and will act quickly and decisively when confronted with such actions.

I know you will recognize these unfortunate and misguided behaviors for what they are and will not let the actions of a few individuals disrupt our strong sense of community, create division amongst us, or erode our unity.

Please continue to support each other, be respectful, welcoming and considerate. I know that we will remain #UNTStrong.

Neal Smatresk
UNT President