BOSTON (WHDH) - In a letter to alumni and the school community, Emerson College President Jay Bernhardt says the college will not bring discipline against any of the protesters who were arrested during a clash with police last week and is encouraging the district attorney not to pursue charges related to encampment violations.

Bernhardt added that the college had staff help pay bail for some of the arrested protestors, and would provide housing support to any student who needs to stay in the city for court appearances.

​”In my relatively short time at Emerson, I have come to deeply value our community’s strong and passionate views, even when they are sometimes hard to hear. I respect and support how our students, faculty, and staff embody those values in their actions. It takes immense bravery to speak out and act in support of a cause. As an institution, the College may not take positions on global conflicts, but our overarching goal is for Emerson to be unyielding in our support for our students’ education and their ability to find and express their voices,” he wrote.

The letter continued, “Because we are committed to our students’ right to protest, Emerson made every possible effort to avoid confrontation between the police and the protesters at the encampment. Prior to the law enforcement action, the College advocated with the City and Boston Police Department for several days to delay the removal of the encampment. When it became clear the City intended to clear the tents from the alley, we actively encouraged the protestors to remove them to prevent arrest. We also strongly and directly advocated for the police to peacefully remove tents without making arrests.

We know that the events of that night were, and are, emotionally overwhelming for our entire community, especially for the students present at the protest and the staff and faculty who were on site to provide support.”

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