Last week, a group of students protested at a University of Connecticut Board of Trustees meeting regarding better mental health services at UConn. For the past few months, UConn’s Student Health and Wellness — Mental Health (SHaW — Mental Health) has been heavily criticized for many reasons, such as the long wait times and lack of funding. The administration has not done enough to improve mental health care on campus.
The way that these students took action was organized very well, and they protested in a very powerful way. In the past, many of the protests that students have organized on campus have not been as direct — by going directly to the board of trustees, students are forcing the administration to really see the problems at hand.
UConn Collaborative Organizing (UCCO) put together the protest in which students marched from the UConn seal to Wilbur Cross, which is where the meeting was taking place. Students petitioned the board to increase SHaW — Mental Health funding and consider hiring a more diverse staff.
SHaW — Mental Health is something at UConn that must improve. The students that protested at the board of trustees went about the protest the right way. After all of the backlash that UConn has received for the resources allocated to SHaW — Mental Health and UConn’s lack of response, a more direct protest will hopefully be exactly what UConn needs to act appropriately.
The protest included student speakers who spoke on the behalf of both graduate and undergraduate students. Due to the lack of funding and resources given to SHaW — Mental Health, all students at UConn have suffered.
This protest should be a wake-up call for the administrators at UConn. SHaW — Mental Health must change, and the students who called for this did a very good job of organizing the protest. The protest was very powerful, and hopefully it will be enough to force the administration to change its policies.