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Retired UNC faculty members address scandal

The Chancellor’s Advisory Committee discussed a wide range of topics during its Wednesday meeting, including the letter that criticized what signers called a lack of action on the part of current UNC faculty surrounding the athletic scandal.

It was signed by more than 30 retired faculty members.

The current faculty will release a response Thursday online, maintaining that they are far from “silent and missing in action” as the letter claimed.

Chancellor Carol Folt said she and Executive Vice Chancellor and Provost Jim Dean met with the Retired Faculty Association for two hours a couple of weeks before the letter was written.

“That group (that signed the letter) was not the Retired Faculty Association,” Folt said. “We have been communicating ... and I think it was a group that might not have been aware of the efforts by our faculty.”

The response to the letter, created by the Faculty Athletics Committee , was read by Lissa Broome , a professor in the law school and committee member.

“As faculty who have consistently insisted upon integrity and reform, we would like to reassure our current and past colleagues that faculty governance is alive and well,” Broome said, reading the opening line of the response.

The committee members applauded the letter and its intentions.

“It’s making everyone aware that we are working on it,” said Joy Renner , the chairwoman of the Faculty Athletics Committee.

“If we had come out strongly one way or another then we would have alienated people, but by remaining neutral, we have been able to hear a lot of different perspectives.”

School of Medicine professor Bruce Cairns, a faculty chairman candidate, said the letter was written to remain neutral on the accusations put forth in the letter by retired faculty.

“This is not a responsive letter, but a reflective letter on what we are doing at this institution,” Cairns said.

The committee also touched on the subject of sexual assault and the impending report from the Sexual Assault Task Force .

Folt said the report has taken more time than was originally expected but said she is glad the task force is taking a meticulous approach to creating the report.

She said if the report gets to her before summer, the University will be able to make any necessary changes to sexual assault policy during the break.

The task force’s final meeting of the academic year is April 24, but a UNC spokeswoman said the draft is not expected to be completed.

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