A University of California Berkeley Police Department employee said officers endured “dehumanizing and bullying behavior” when they were asked by students not to use public restrooms during a demonstration on campus because their presence was “upsetting” them.
The unnamed UCPD security patrol officer, who has 25 years of campus community service, sent the email to UCB Chancellor Carol Christ last September — amid right-wing provocateur Milo Yiannopoulos’ 2017 appearance on campus — saying he’s “never been treated with such disrespect and disregard,” according to a document obtained by a Young America’s Foundation (YAF) public-records request.
The officer said, aside from violating the law, restricting police officers and employees “from using a publicly accessible restroom, in a publicly accessible building is unconscionable.”
“How can we foster a sense of community policing when the campus community, that we work hard to protect, has such disdain for us as fellow human beings that would deny us such a basic human function,” he wrote. “If we treated a member of the campus community in this way we would most certainly be held accountable and rightly so.”
The demoralized officer ended his letter with a plea: “I’m not looking for any one person or person’s to be held accountable for this incident rather an understanding that we too are human beings and that we look forward to the day that we are accepted into the campus community.”
Dan Mogulof, a UC-Berkeley spokesman, confirmed the incident with Fox News.
“Some students did express concern about uniformed officers using restrooms in the student center building, and the campus police department (UCPD) was made aware of their request,” Mogulof said. “While UCPD command staff understand that a police presence can be upsetting to some, they made clear that complying with the request would not be possible given the number of police presence on campus during the day in question.”
Mogulof said the school was doing its best to promote understanding and avoid unnecessary conflict.
“We have nothing but the deepest respect and appreciation for the law enforcement officers who work hard to keep out community safe.
“At the same time, the campus administration and the UCPD are aware that the extraordinary number of extra officers we needed at that time to uphold our paired commitments to Free Speech and security was disconcerting to some.”
Mogulof called Yiannopolos’ event “the most expensive photo op in the university’s history,” which the administration said cost the school $800,000. Meanwhile, Antifa demonstrators and students also protested when conservative commentator Ben Shapiro made an appearance, costing the school another $600,000.
YAF spokesman Spencer Brown, told Fox News Berkeley’s actions are teaching students to distrust the police instead of preparing them for the real world.
“Berkeley is treating its police officers as second-class citizens, giving preferential treatment again to the apparently-fragile students and disrespecting the very people who protect them from the likes of Antifa,” Brown said. “Not only has UC Berkeley disrespected its officers by putting them in harm’s way without allowing them to do their jobs via a stand-down order during campus protests, but they’ve now disgracefully told officers that they can’t use the same bathrooms as students.”
Berkeley had a series of protests last year after speakers like Yiannopoulos and conservative commentator Ben Shapiro made appearances on campus.