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Law Students Stage Surprise Sit-In

Sixteen Protesters Drive Kraakman From Office, Occupy Room for 15 Minutes

By Philip P. Pan, Crimson Staff Writer

Sixteen Law School students crowded into the office of Professor of Law Reiner H. Kraakman yesterday afternoon and staged the second sit-in in as many days to protest the school's record on women and minority faculty hiring.

Kraakman, a member of a faculty committee which nominates scholars for tenure, appeared surprised by the visit and chose not to remain in his office with the silent protesters.

"I take it you're not asking for a conversation with me," Kraakman said before gathering his belongings and leaving his office.

The students, all members of the Coalition for Civil Rights, continued the sit-in for about 15 minutes before departing at 1:30 p.m.

Later that afternoon representatives of the coalition met with Dean of the Law School Robert C. Clark. Details of the meeting were unavailable.

A group of law students staged a similar protest Wednesday in the office of Carter Professor of General Jurisprudence Charles Fried. The students ended the sit-in after Fried threatened them with disciplinary action.

Kraakman reacted less forcefully, but he was clearly unhappy about the protest.

"I don't think it's very pleasant. I don't think it's productive," said Kraakman, who was preparing for a 2 p.m. class when the students interrupted.

Katya Komisaruka, a second-year law student who participated in both sit-ins, said the group is trying to target faculty members who they think may be blocking women and minority appointments.

"[Clark] isn't the entire problem here. The fact is the rest of the faculty is complicit in failing to diversify," she said.

Of the 64 tenured and tenure-tracked faculty members at the Law School, three are Black men and three are white women. There are no Latinos or Asian Americans on the faculty.

Komisaruka said the sit-ins are just the beginnings of a campaign that will continue through the spring. Student organizers plan to build mo- mentum with other surprise events and a boycottof classes on April 2.

"At this point, we're pushing the envelopeincrementally. This is a sample of what's going tocome," she said, adding that civil disobedienceand student arrests have not been ruled out.

The short, surprise sit-ins represent thecoalition's latest tactic in their campaign toforce the Law School to hire more women andminority faculty.

The group has filed suit in state courtscharging the school with violatinganti-discrimination laws. The students have alsoparticipated in several debates and discussionswith Clark and faculty members about the issue.

"Response in the form of meeting and discussingis insufficient," said Komisaruka. "The responsehas to come in the form of appointments.

"At this point, we're pushing the envelopeincrementally. This is a sample of what's going tocome," she said, adding that civil disobedienceand student arrests have not been ruled out.

The short, surprise sit-ins represent thecoalition's latest tactic in their campaign toforce the Law School to hire more women andminority faculty.

The group has filed suit in state courtscharging the school with violatinganti-discrimination laws. The students have alsoparticipated in several debates and discussionswith Clark and faculty members about the issue.

"Response in the form of meeting and discussingis insufficient," said Komisaruka. "The responsehas to come in the form of appointments.

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