Xenonophobic posters appear on campus ahead of the academic year

Image Credit: Tessa Ndjonkou

During the summer semester, posters with hate speech began appearing on the UCD campus.

Despite UCD campus being mostly deserted during the months of July and August, a summer occurrence that did not go unnoticed was mysterious and progressive appearance of posters containing various forms of hate speech and dog whistles such as #IrelandIsFull, #StopTransingKids and #Women’sRightsAreHumanRights. Students, who have chosen to remain anonymous, first encountered these posters as they were excited about the sport and pool facilities available in UCD’s Student Center. One student said: “I saw these posters inside of bathroom stalls, and I would initially tear them down but they just kept appearing again”. UCD is an open campus, and as such, anyone is permitted entry, making the identification and policing of such flyering difficult. However, the campus has specific zones where flyering not affiliated with UCD is not permitted and will be taken down without notice if found. Furthermore, the current legislation surrounding hate speech and hate-crimes in Ireland is so nebulous that even if caught, perpetrators may not see any legal action.

The appearance of these posters comes a few months after the vandalism of UCD LGBTQ+Soc Lavender Ball posters last spring. The incident that had students and faculty concerned was unprecedented on UCD campus. "I had no idea this was happening, it's really scary", said one student. The perpetrators of this vandalism have not yet been identified. These posters seem to have disappeared from the Student Center but there is no telling whether they might return, which begs the questions of the safety and the peace of mind of students of minority identities on a campus that prides itself in being one of the most diverse and inclusive in Ireland. 

UCD Estates has been informed of these occurrences but has declined to comment at this time.