Sheffield University bans students from wearing sombrero fancy dress

George Martin
A spectator wears a sombrero as he watches the action on the big screen on day ten of the 2011 Wimbledon Championships at the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club, Wimbledon.   (Photo by Stephen Pond - PA Images via Getty Images)
The university banned students from wearing sombrero fancy dress. (Getty) [file photo]

Sheffield University has been critcised for banning students from wearing sombreros as fancy dress.

Under the establishment’s new policies, security staff will challenge any students they believe to be guilty of “cultural appropriation” over Halloween.

According to The Times, posters have been put up across the city centre campus warning students of the change.

One poster, showing an Arabian female outfit, reportedly reads: “My culture is not your costume.”

The university said security staff would challenge any culturally insensitive costumes. (Google)
The university said security staff would challenge any culturally insensitive costumes. (Google)

Rosa Tully, the students’ union women’s officer, said: “We have produced these posters reminding you this Hallowe’en to consider whether your costume mocks or demeans another person’s race, culture or disability.”

Students, some of whom claimed to be Mexican, reacted angrily. Alex Garcia wrote on Facebook: “As a Mexican I can legit say f*** this shit.”


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Memo Maldonado agreed, saying: “Same. We actually love seeing people with them [sombreros].”

It comes after the National Union of Students (NUS) issued guidelines reccomending that universities challenge insulting costumes.

It said: “This Hallowe’en we want everyone to check and double-check their costume to avoid the exploitation and degradation of others.

“Don’t let racism, sexism, homophobia, transphobia and ableism be the real horror this Hallowe’en.”

NUS guidance published on its website lists outfits such as a scary clown, an ape and a tattooed man dressed as the American TV personality Caitlin Jenner as offensive.

In a statement on Monday, the NUS said: “In recent years, we’ve seen offensive costumes being sold, including costumes that appropriate race and culture, perpetuate sexist stereotypes and make light of the experiences of Trans people and those with disabilities.”

A spokesperson for Sheffield University's Students' Union said: “The 'My Culture is Not Your Costume’ campaign aims to encourage students to question the common practice of cultural appropriation in Hallowe'en costumes and celebrations.

"This campaign does not enforce a ‘ban’, but intends to raise awareness of the issue amongst the student body".

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