Oxford University and King’s College London cut Sackler ties [Updated]

Bodleian Art, Archaeology and Ancient World Library. Courtesy Wikicommons / CC BY-SA 4.0

The University of Oxford is the latest institution to sever its connection with the Sackler family known for their production of addictive opioid drugs. Following an investigation initiated by Oxford’s vice-chancellor Irene Tracey earlier this year, the University has decided to remove the family’s name from the Sackler Library, two galleries in the Ashmolean Museum, as well as three staff positions supported by Sackler funds. The Sackler Library has been renamed Bodleian Art, Archaeology and Ancient World Library. 

According to a statement issued by the University, it will retain the Sackler name on the Ashmolean Museum’s donor board, for the purpose of the historical recording of donations to the University, while existing Sackler funds will continue to be used for the intended educational causes.

On Friday, another UK University, King’s College London, has also announced that it will cut Sackler ties and rename its Sackler Institute for Translational Neurodevelopment, which was launched in 2013. According to The Guardian, the college’s last £750,000 Sackler fund was received from the Dr Mortimer and Theresa Sackler Foundation in 2021, which supports 22 doctoral students.

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