Cabrillo’s Pride Flag Burned in Act of Vandalism


Sometime on Friday evening March 4, 2022, an LGBTQ Pride flag hanging in the Watsonville campus El Patio area was set on fire. Just 2 weeks prior, offensive racist graffiti was found on a restroom wall near the Aptos campus’s Carl Connelly Stadium. In response to these discriminatory acts of vandalism, College leadership planned an LGBTQ flag-raising ceremony at the Watsonville campus the following Monday, March 7 to allow the community to come together for a collective positive response.

We as college leaders and community members stood in solidarity to re-affirm that acts of violence and intimidation at Cabrillo that target any minoritized community are unacceptable, and the burning of an LGBTQ pride flag on our Watsonville campus is no exception. As an out LGBTQ elected leader at our college, I know how critical it is we make sure every student, staff and faculty member feel safe at our college. We must ensure Cabrillo stays welcoming and safe for everyone, and do what we do best as an outstanding institution of higher education—lean into this horrific act as a teachable moment. We do this by increasing opportunities to showcase positive representations of LGBTQ people, history, and events at Cabrillo, holding stronger to developing pedagogy that deconstructs bias, demands equity, and celebrates inclusion in our classrooms and across our campuses, and holding each other up in the face of any act of hate to remind each other that the love, equity, and justice we collectively fight for far outshines the darkness any discriminatory incident brings. Read more…