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What ASUNM will discuss at Wednesday's Senate meeting

Several pieces of legislation will be presented at Wednesday’s Associated Students of UNM Senate deliberations, the final such meeting for the undergraduate student governing body this semester.

Here is a rundown of the resolutions that will be discussed and voted on. The meeting begins at 6 p.m. Wednesday in the Lobo A&B room of the SUB. 


Resolution 11F

Introduced by Sen. Emily-Clair Stepanek and Sen. Ted Olguin

This resolution, if passed by ASUNM Senate, would officially establish the ASUNM office (located in the bottom floor of the SUB) as a safe zone for students concerned about the environment on campus.

The resolution, while not explicitly attributing it to the polarizing Election Day results, acknowledged that there has been an increase in “hate-bias incidents,” specifically citing Nazi-themed graffiti that appeared on campus soon after Election Day, that “may cause students to feel unsafe.”

Many student communities at the University have reported feeling threatened by the rhetoric that President-elect Donald Trump has validated during his campaign for office, including Muslim American and Native American students.

ASUNM certainly won’t be the first to address the tense atmosphere on campus in the weeks since Nov. 8. UNM administrators, including President Bob Frank and Provost Chaouki Abdallah, have addressed the issue in separate email communiques, and many on-campus departments have implemented safe zones of their own.

Resolution 11F also states that, if passed, ASUNM supports civil and open dialogue between students, staff and faculty, as well as encouraging “mutual respect" in that endeavor. 


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Resolution 12F

Introduced by Sen. Sadé Patterson

This resolution proposes a “Bring Your Kids to Campus Day” to be held in April, an event meant to “celebrate non-traditional students, empower parents to earn their education, and create a more family-friendly environment” at UNM, according to the legislation.

The resolution states that similar events have been organized at Oregon State University and Portland State University. If passed in its current state, ASUNM would assist in the organization and planning of the event at UNM.

Resolution 12F is the latest in a series of legislations introduced this semester by Sen. Patterson, who over her tenure has worked to champion student parents. Previous resolutions introduced by her, and subsequently passed by Senate, include supporting diaper-changing stations in all UNM bathrooms, and the implementation of designated parking spots for pregnant students.


Resolution 13F

Introduced by Sen. Sadé Patterson

This resolution, also created by Sen. Patterson, supports the creation of a “kid-friendly study lounge” in Zimmerman Library through collaborative efforts between ASUNM and the University.

Citing an article on younginvincibles.org, the legislation states that it can be difficult for student parents to find the time to study when they also have children to look after, not to mention jobs.

“Parents who have a kid-friendly study lounge have more time to study, and will not disrupt others,” the resolution states.


Resolution 14F

Introduced by Sen. Sadé Patterson

This resolution, if passed by ASUNM Senate, calls for an expansion of resources promoted by the Women’s Resource Center at UNM that “includes the choices of parenting, adoption and abortion” for expecting students.

The legislation essentially seeks to make information on all options available, stating that the Women’s Resource Center “should serve as an unbiased voice for students regardless of their choices regarding pregnancy.”

Specifically, Resolution 14F proposes that the center adds information for the Care Net Pregnancy Center, Women’s Pregnancy Options, Adoption Assistance, Lovelace Labor of Love, and the Barrett House to its website under the “Health and Wellness” section of Parenting Resources.

The organizations and resources currently listed on the website in that space are: the ABQ Birth Network, New MexiKids, New Mexico State Coverage Insurance, New Mexico Midwives Association and Planned Parenthood.


Resolution 15F

Introduced by Sen. Ryan Ansloan and Sen. Aubriana Romero-Knell

This resolution, if passed by ASUNM Senate, states that the governing body supports continued efforts by UNM to combat the issue of sexual assault and harassment, following a U.S. Department of Justice investigation that concluded the University’s procedures are confusing and inadequate. 

“ASUNM is committed to playing a significant role in the continued process of ensuring that the University is as safe, supportive, vigilant and responsive an environment as possible for all students,” the current version of the resolution reads.

UNM administration is in the process of implementing new methods of combatting sexual assault and harassment after settling with the DOJ earlier this semester, including providing in-person training with all students by Dec. 31, 2017. 

David Lynch is the editor-in-chief at the Daily Lobo. He can be reached at editorinchief@dailylobo.com or on Twitter @RealDavidLynch. 

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