On May 9, 2022, Skagit Valley College and Everett Community College, both in Mount Vernon, Washington, were forced to lock down and close campus spaces after they received violent threats over email.
According to school officials, violent messages were sent by email to several offices on the campus of Everett Community College. The messages contained racist language and made specific threats of violence. Consequently, the campus was forced to lock down for two days. Skagit Valley College received similar messages, and was also forced to lock down for a day.
Scholars at Risk is concerned about targeted, violent, and racist threats aimed at intimidating members of the higher education community and disrupting classes and campus life. Threats aimed at intimidating members of the higher education community undermine academic freedom, university autonomy, and equitable access overall. Federal, state, and university authorities should take reasonable steps to respond to and prevent such attacks, including by investigating and holding perpetrators accountable. In addition to the harm to the targets, such threats undermine academic freedom and democratic society generally.