Emily Dawes, the President of Southampton Students’ Union, has said that a war memorial at the university should be painted over. The memorial was painted in 1916 and is a tribute to those who died in the First World War and never received their university degree. Dawes threatened to paint the memorial over herself if the university didn’t agree to do so.
After a series of Twitter posts asking Dawes to reconsider her position to avoid causing offense to those who died in the war, she posted on Twitter:
“As white people, we are so so ignorant and closed minded without even realising it”.
The University of Southampton rejected the President’s comments and said in a statement:
“The comments made by the Students’ Union President regarding the Rothenstein Mural are not shared by the University of Southampton and do not represent the views of the University community”.
The Students’ Union also distanced themselves from the comments made by President, saying in a statement:
“This does not follow our mission or values”.