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University of Wisconsin-Madison students demand free tuition and housing for black students because of slavery

University of Wisconsin-Madison students demand free tuition and housing for black students because of slavery

AP -- 

Black students should be offered free tuition and housing at the University of Wisconsin-Madison because blacks were legally barred from education during slavery and UW-Madison remains out of reach for black students today, the student government said Wednesday.

The Associated Students of Madison said in a resolution that students from suburban high schools are overrepresented and that the consideration of ACT and SAT scores in applications restricts opportunities for the poor and thus upholds "white supremacy." Race relations have been a contentious issue at the Wisconsin's flagship campus for months and the university has proposed some measures aimed at improving diversity.

"The university's rhetoric suggests that it is committed to diversity and inclusion, so this legislation compels the university to move towards action - which is imperative," the resolution's author, ASM Student Council Rep. Tyriek Mack, said in a statement. "If no one challenges the university's empty promises, then the racial composition will remain stagnant."

The resolution demands free access to the university for all black people, including former inmates. That means free tuition, free housing and no fees, Mack said. It says 10 percent of donations to the university should go toward bolstering financial aid and studying the feasibility of test-optional and geographically weighted admissions.

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