Roo News

The Student News Site of University of Missouri - Kansas City

Roo News

Roo News

Amidst the festive spirit of St. Patricks Day, the iconic symbol of luck, the clover, reminds us of the rich traditions and celebrations honoring Irish heritage.
Exploring St. Patrick's Day Alternatives in Kansas City
Aydan Stigler and Grace BeshoreMarch 14, 2024

  The annual St. Patrick's Day celebration is just around the corner, and with celebration comes large crowds.    The annual city parade...

Visit the City Market to explore local vendors.
Smart Saving Strategies for a Wallet-Friendly Spring Break
Emily Wheeler, Staff Writer • March 14, 2024

  UMKC students are ready for the upcoming week-long spring break, but are their wallets?   From travel adventures to staycations, spring...

Earth Mother by Sheron Smith
Her Art/Their Art Explores the Female Experience in the 21st Century
Elyse Bredfeldt, Staff Writer • March 12, 2024

  Her Art/Their Art is a collection that aims to answer the question: “What does it mean to identify, live, navigate, or be perceived by society...

Nina Simone: Four Women” playbook.
The KC Rep’s “Nina Simone: Four Women” is both timeless and poignant.
Maisy Blanton, Staff Writer • March 5, 2024

  The Kansas City Repertory Theater (KCRep) recently performed “Nina Simone: Four Women.” The show follows musician Nina Simone as she...

Around 1 million people were estimated to be in attendance at the parade.
One Dead, Several Injured During Chiefs Parade
Zach Gunter and Jazlyn SummersFebruary 14, 2024

Update:   As of 2:30 p.m. Thursday afternoon, the number of those injured at the Union Station shooting after the Chiefs Super Bowl parade...

UMKC Students for Justice in Palestine Defy Setbacks, Empower Palestinian Voices

Student-led group perseveres through challenges to advocate for justice on campus and beyond
Iqbal Singh
Tabling event hosted by SJP.

  The Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) group has recently rereleased the announcement of their executive board. Although initially shared publicly in October 2023, however, they quickly removed their post to avoid possible negative interactions on campus. 

  “I asked the others to do this with me, to join the board, so I didn’t feel comfortable putting their safety at risk,” said Yara Salamed, the co-president of SJP and a first-year law student with an emphasis on advocacy. 

  This semester there are no-holds-barred for the student-led organization. 

  It has been an uphill battle for the founding members to achieve recognition, but their setbacks have only further fueled their drive to advocate for Palestinian lives at UMKC.

  “There were issues with getting a faculty advisor because they saw it as too controversial – whatever that means,” Salamed said. 

  SJP’s first advisor was dismissed before the group got off their feet due to the inability to agree on the goals of their constitution. 

  Since then, the organization has grown tremendously through campus engagement and community outreach. This spring, they aim to continue amplifying Palestinian voices with monthly tabling events, protests and establishing safe spaces at UMKC. 

  “As I got to be part of the organization, I saw that there are a lot of Palestinians on campus, but it was only through getting to know them and interacting with them that I really got to know and meet them,” said Mahmoud Kutmah, the vice president of SJP, and a first-year med student. 

  While still a relatively new group, they have amassed many members and over a thousand followers on their Instagram account, @umkcsjp, which regularly posts updates about what’s happening in Palestine.

  “My goal from the get-go was not the platform of my own voice you know, but to give a platform to Palestinians to speak to your average person walking on campus,” Kutmah said. “That’s why we’ve done so many table events and awareness events, where you could go up to learn from Palestinians and learn about Palestine on campus.” 

  The group often sees upwards of 300 people in attendance for their frequent rallies and protests. Among them are students, community members, and individuals from across the Midwest who travel to show solidarity and support. 

  As the semester unfolds, SJP intends to continue its mission of promoting awareness of the horrors happening in Palestine and remaining a welcoming group for all who wish to join. 

  Students who wish to participate with the group can join their Roo Groups page and follow SJP on Instagram for more information.

 [email protected]

Leave a Comment
Donate to Roo News

Your donation will support the student journalists of University of Missouri - Kansas City. Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment and cover our annual website hosting costs.

More to Discover
About the Contributor
Iqbal Singh
Iqbal Singh, Photo Editor
Donate to Roo News

Comments (0)

All Roo News Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *