Trinity College Dublin Students Union (TCDSU) have announced it will be referring to the Berkeley Library as “the X Library” in all future communications.
This afternoon, sabbatical officers of TCDSU issued an open letter to the Provost Linda Doyle calling for the immediate de-naming of the Berkeley Library.
The letter names September 30 as the deadline to provide a plan “before escalated action is taken”.
The union is asking that College “immediately” remove the sign which bears Berkeley’s name outside the Library. TCDSU are also calling on College to engage in a stakeholder consultation to decide a new name for the Library in coordination with all staff and students.
The letter, which was written and sent by TCDSU President Gabi Fullam, stated that “Berkeley’s slave-owning past and colonial legacy has been well documented”.
Fullam added that the Rename the Berkeley Campaign is a “grassroots effort from students troubled by his presence within College”.
“The Berkeley Memorial Window in the College Chapel, medals which are named after him, and most notably, the Berkeley Library,” the open letter added.
In February of this year, TCDSU was mandated to lobby College to change the Library’s name after a motion supporting the campaign was passed.
Fullam continued: “I am not writing this email to reiterate what has already been made clear: colonial slave-ownership is appauling, and in the modern day, the treatment of minority ethnicity students throughout college has been deemed unacceptable at many levels.”
“The student-led campaign has brought us this far, but College’s slow action on this issue is unacceptable,” the letter to the provost addded. “We know the colossal impact slavery has had on the modern world. We know slave-owned people received little justice in their lifetimes. Why delay?”
Fullam’s letter announced that with immediate effect, TCDSU will be “de-naming” the Berkeley Library, and the library will be referred to as X Library in all TCDSU communications.
“The students union has and always will support any efforts College makes towards Equality, Diversity and Inclusion, but to ignore something so pivotal is to undermine any efforts made,” Fullam added.
This article was updated at 4:35pm on August 23 to correct a misspelling.