PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — Parents are calling for a change after the Reynolds High School girl’s basketball team walked out of their game against Sandy on Thursday after they say people in the stands started yelling racial slurs at them.
Now the parents of one of the players want to put the spotlight on the intolerance that can exist even in youth sports.
Parents Brian and Natalie Glenn say the racist name calling from the stands was bad enough, but they were also very troubled and frustrated after they claim administrators did nothing. Essentially, they say, forcing the Reynolds team to leave.
“I wouldn’t think that now with so much that’s transpired in the past few years that my child would be subject to this as a youth sport,” Natalie Glenn said.
Glenn says the varsity girls basketball game in Sandy turned into a nightmare for the Reynolds team when her daughter says they heard people in the stands yelling racial slurs — including calling them the N-word.
“Sports is our community, it represents who we are it represents our students and the passion that they have for what they are doing,” Natalie Glenn explained.
Glenn found a Sandy administrator and requested those spectators be sent home, but it didn’t happen.
“Our daughter comes up to us and says ‘I think we are going to go ahead and leave the game,’ and she’s crying at this point,” Natalie said.
Brian Glenn explained “the student body and the lack of any administration to correct the problem, is how we find ourselves here right now.”
The Oregon Trail School District issued a statement acknowledging there was an incident at Thursday night’s game.
“Allegations were made that a student spectator was using racially charged language. While we thoroughly investigated the incident and were unable to corroborate the accusation, we acknowledge that it is our responsibility to ensure every athlete and spectator feels welcomed and we uphold the integrity of high school athletics,” the school district said.
The district added, “we were unable to do that last night. We have no tolerance for discrimination.”
In the meantime, Natalie Glenn is planning to contact the Mt. Hood Conference.
“I am going to ask for a suspension of Sandy High School until they can provide proof of diversity, equity and inclusion training for their student body and their staff,” Glenn said.
Brian Glenn noted “At some point, enough has to be enough and for me enough became the moment they called my daughter less than who she is.”
KOIN 6 also reached out to Reynolds. Stephanie Field, the executive director of communications and community relations, sent a statement saying, “I am aware of an incident and it is currently being investigated.”
Natalie Glenn says she’s also calling on other parents who have concerns for support in bringing attention to this issue.