Inside Gauss Haus: Anti-Discrimination work
“Anyone who is hostile to strangers is not worthy to be a member of our university.” Almost 30 years ago, the Senate already passed this resolution and hung a plaque in the Forum building. After the building was renovated, the Senate reinstalled the plaque on Nov. 13th, 2019, in a ceremony with AStA and Gauss Friends.
You can’t talk about cosmopolitanism and international understanding without addressing discrimination. You can’t talk about welcome culture when people are discriminated against because of their origin or skin color; or are afraid to enter certain places; or are physically or verbally attacked.
The Gauss Friends stand for a friendly coexistence in which all cultures are of equal value and importance, but the interaction with each other is not affected by cultural differences. However, it is even more important to resolutely oppose ideologies such as racism and to stand up against discrimination, which also explains the zero-tolerance line towards xenophobia in the Gauss Haus. This is therefore clearly stated in the values and house rules.
In our more than 10-year history, cases of discrimination have unfortunately not been uncommon. Often, international students or alumni come to us because they have difficulties finding housing or jobs due to their origin or experience racist insults.
Anti-discrimination work is an ongoing process. For several years, Gauss Friends has been involved with the local Festival contre le racisme, hosting activities such as lectures, film screenings, discussions, and more. In addition, we started an online vigil against racism in July 2020 to create more awareness regarding the different facets of discrimination in Germany. We are very happy with the number of episodes we have organized so far and look forward to continue this action.
Contact us if you also want to get involved against discrimination!