A Black high school student is speaking out after one of her classmates made a racist video that circulated social media.
Nya Sigin is a freshman at Prior Lake High School in Minnesota and says she was the target of a now-viral video in which a student uses the N-word multiple times and even encourages Nya to take her own life.
“I’m at a loss of words for what they’ve done,” Nya told FOX 9 News on Wednesday (November 10), referring to the outpouring of support from other classmates, but Nya says she wants school officials to do more to protect her.
The student had made a prior video in which she can apparently be seen punching a pillow with the N-word written on it.
“Nobody is going to forget what this girl said about my sister,” Nya’s older sister, Elizabeth Sigin, told the outlet. “She beat up the pillow while calling the pillow racial slurs, pretending as if the pillow was a Black person,” Elizabeth, who is a senior at the Prior Lake, added.
The sisters said they voiced their concerns about the original video before other videos were made and posted. The taunting and calls for Nya to kill herself in the viral video comes just months after Nya was released from inpatient facility while struggling with her mental health.
“To think that they could even say such things about another human being, it’s beyond me,” Nya said. “It makes it ten times harder to succeed in such a terrible environment where you feel like you’re not loved by your community,” Elizabeth said.
The school responded by sending a letter to parents on Wednesday (November 10), promising space to talk about the video and offering counselors and staff, but Nya said it’s not enough.
“They feel safe and comfortable to continue to do these things because they do not get punished at school, and they do not get punished at home,” Elizabeth said.
Meanwhile, the Savage Police Department said it has detectives investigating the video since encouraging someone to die by suicide is against state law.
Additionally, the Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community released a statement confirming that the racist video involves a minor from their community.
“I really can’t imagine what the next four years are going to look like, and it scares me. It really does scare me to have to go through this,” Nya added. “No one should ever have to go through this, especially regarding the color of their skin.”
A GoFundMe page was set up for Nya’s college fund and has already reportedly surpassed $50,000.
If you or someone you know need mental health help, text “STRENGTH” to the Crisis Text Line at 741-741 to be connected to a certified crisis counselor.