Students continue support of Tuskegee band protest

Published: Nov. 1, 2021 at 6:10 AM CDT
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TUSKEGEE, Ala. (WSFA) - For the second week in a row, the Marching Crimson Piper Band of Tuskegee University did not perform at a football game.

This comes after students members in the band announced that they would no longer participate in University-sponsored events if school officials did not address a list of concerns. Those concerns include leadership, funding, and recruitment.

Many students are standing in solidarity with the band, hashtagging “Save the Band” on Twitter. Some are even saying they won’t attend games until the university meets those concerns.

Student supporting the band Makayla Thibodeaux says everyone must work together for the band to perform again.

“Besides the students supporting them, the band needs 100 percent support from administration,” Thibodeau said. “I feel like if you work for a school that you love so much, then you need to prove that and show that.”

Tuskegee will be playing Miles College next Saturday, and there’s no indication right now that the band currently has any plans on performing at that game.

A statement from the university president, Charlotte P. Morris, was released on the university’s website last week. reads:

“On Friday, October 22, 2021, university officials received a letter from current Tuskegee University Marching Crimson Piper band members outlining their concerns about the marching band program. In the letter, band members also announced a decision to cease participation in university-sponsored events, including the 2021 homecoming football game against Lane College scheduled for Saturday, October 23, 2021.

The Marching Crimson Piper band members are an essential part of the Tuskegee family. We look forward to meeting with band leaders to discuss and respond to their concerns. We thank the Tuskegee community for their support as we work to resolve these issues together.”

A spokesperson for the school told WSFA 12 News that university officials met with band members Monday to respond to their concerns. WSFA was not allowed to attend that meeting.

At this time, university officials have declined to speak publicly on the matter.

Copyright 2021 WSFA 12 News. All rights reserved.