Aussie students ‘investigated’ after dressing in KKK costumes and blackface for party

‘Politically incorrect’ was the theme of the event, but the university says the students crossed a line

PUBLISHED : Friday, 15 June, 2018, 4:18pm
UPDATED : Friday, 15 June, 2018, 9:06pm

Five Australian university students who dressed as members of the Ku Klux Klan and one who dressed in blackface as a “cotton-picking” slave for a “politically incorrect” themed party will be investigated after the vice chancellor condemned their actions.

The men, from Charles Sturt University, posted pictures of themselves on social media on Thursday night at an end-of-term party at the Black Swan Hotel in Wagga Wagga.

One photo posted to Instagram and since deleted was captioned “very very politically incorrect”.

“Cotton prices are unreal though so it’s a great time to be pickin,” it said.

It showed five men in home-made Ku Klux Klan hoods and robes and one man in blackface and body paint, pretending to be a slave.

It does not reflect our university values and we strongly condemn these actions
Andrew Vann, Charles Sturt University

A public description on Facebook billed the event as a two-day end-of-term party with a “politically incorrect” opening night.

“As exams have just commenced we are already looking forward to the end of term and thus, the idea of the muddy duck ‘two dayer’ has been born,” it said. “Thursday night [is a] ‘politically incorrect’ themed session kicking off at 7.30pm. So grab a kit that would legally get you in the s**t and hook right in.”

The university’s vice chancellor, Andrew Vann, said: “Charles Sturt University will not tolerate this offensive behaviour. It does not reflect our university values and we strongly condemn these actions. CSU is currently investigating these incidents and social media posts.”

On Friday, several men in the photos had deleted their Instagram and Facebook accounts.

In a now-deleted Facebook post, made at 9pm on the night of the event, the Black Swan Hotel said it had no prior knowledge of the racist costumes.

“The pub was made aware of an incident unbeknownst to staff,” it said. “We were unaware of this behaviour happening out the back of the pub, however we have immediately dealt with this. We have zero tolerance and do not condone this behaviour.”