Salaita to end silence

By Daily Illini Staff Report

After months of silence, Steven Salaita will make his first public comment during a press conference Tuesday to address his rescinded job offer at the University.

The press conference will take place at 12:30 p.m. at the University YMCA, 1001 S. Wright St. and is open to the public. 

This is Salaita’s first time speaking publicly after his position was not forwarded to the Board of Trustees in early August, after tweeting about Israel’s invasion of Gaza . 

Salaita had accepted a tenure position in the American Indian Studies Program before the incident; however, his approval was not final. 

Since the incident, multiple departments cast votes of no confidence in Chancellor Phyllis Wise, and many professors around the nation are boycotting the University. 

Several speakers have also canceled their visits to the University and a national conference scheduled to be held on campus was canceled.   

Robert Warrior, director of the American Indian Studies program, will also speak at the conference with Salaita. 

“I was the one who originally recommended (Salaita), and I am still committed to him coming to join our faculty,” he said. 

The press conference will follow a civil walk-out by students supporting Salaita, which is scheduled to begin at 11:30 a.m. The walk-out encourages students to leave class and rally on the quad.

Other speakers will include Michael Rothberg, English department head, and University students Eman Ghanayem and Rico Kleinstein. 

Salaita is being represented by the Center for Constitutional Rights and Maria Lahood, senior attorney with the organization, will be in attendance.