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Nate Bernard


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News

Solidarity encampment demands divestment from Israel

The University of New Mexico Palestine solidarity encampment, since its formation at the Duck Pond on April 22, has supported the employment of a divestment resolution from Israel. The resolution seeks to begin the process of disclosing investments the University has that support Israel. It also aims to halt those investments, which would cut economic ties between UNM and Israel – a process known as divestment. The resolution was submitted to Board of Regents (BOR) Chair Kim Rael by the UNM Divestment Coalition, which consists of UNM College Democrats, Law Students Against Imperialism and 37 other student organizations and advocacy groups not affiliated with UNM. It follows the Israel-Hamas War, during which at least 35,000 Palestinians have been killed as of May 12, according to Al Jazeera.

History of Protest
News

The SUB’s history with anti-war protest

On May 8, 1970, after three days of occupying the Student Union Building in protest of the Vietnam War, 131 University of New Mexico students were arrested. Fifty-four years later, 16 protesters were arrested after they occupied the SUB in solidarity with Palestine amidst the war in Gaza.  The Vietnam War protests at UNM followed United States President Richard Nixon’s order to invade Cambodia on April 31, 1970, according to a UNM timeline. UNM President Ferrel Heady sent a telegram to Nixon disapproving of the invasion, according to a Daily Lobo article from May 6, 1970.

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News

Nation’s first mental health responders sign union contract

The Albuquerque Community Safety department secured their first collective bargaining agreement with their union in March. The department cited lack of support for employee well-being, stability and mental health, according to ACS Agency Vice President and bargaining committee member Crystal Little. The Union represents the first government agency in the nation that sends first responders with backgrounds in mental health to non-violent calls, according to Sherii Miera, an ACS behavioral health responder and bargaining committee member. Responders are dispatched through 911 calls, Miera said. “One of our main goals throughout has been to focus on the safety and well-being of the responders and ensuring that our voices are heard,” Little said.

Plant Day
Culture

Cultivating mental wellness at Plant Night

On Friday, April 26, the University of New Mexico Student Union Building hosted Plant Night – an event where students received free plants and decorated their pots.  The art supplies to paint the pots were provided by the SUB. Harsh Kumar, an attendee of the event, and his family painted their pot with bright colors and nature. Kumar’s family doesn’t keep ornamental plants – grown for their appearance rather than functionality – too often, he said. Instead, they spend their time taking care of their edible plants.

ACS.jpg
News

Nation’s first mental health responders sign union contract

The Albuquerque Community Safety department secured their first collective bargaining agreement with their union in March. The department cited lack of support for employee well-being, stability and mental health, according to ACS Agency Vice President and bargaining committee member Crystal Little. The Union represents the first government agency in the nation that sends first responders with backgrounds in mental health to non-violent calls, according to Sherii Miera, an ACS behavioral health responder and bargaining committee member. Responders are dispatched through 911 calls, Miera said.

Unions and Mental Health
News

Unions impact on teachers' mental health and well-being

“Unionism allows you a track to have your voice heard and to professionally push for the things that you value the most,” Sean Thomas, the executive vice president of the Albuquerque Teachers Federation, said. “Once you feel like you can exercise your voice, you don't feel so much like the world is happening to you, but you have the feeling that what you do matters and that you can change the conditions you're in.” Thomas is a teacher at Eldorado High School. He and fellow ATF member Sonja Kortsch said union involvement has benefited their mental health.

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News

United Graduate Workers and UNM begin negotiations on wage increases

The United Graduate Workers of the University of New Mexico and UNM administration have begun another round of bargaining sessions. This the first time the sessions will be in conjunction with state and University budget schedules, as decided upon by the amended collective bargaining agreement last fall. The union seeks to increase wages for all graduate students to attain “just compensation and living wages,” according to their website.  The first bargaining session this round took place April 8, followed by an April 10 session.   This is the first time UGW and the University has held negotiations in the spring – the same time in which the University and the state of New Mexico set their budgets, according to Wilber Dominguez, union steward for the physics department. 

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Opinion

Opinion: No Labels: The scam that keeps on scamming

Many Americans are exhausted from our two political giants, Democrats and Republicans. Their divisiveness inflames and divides us every four years. A substantial 63% of Americans believe “a third party is needed” because the Republican and Democratic parties do “such a poor job,” according to a September 2023 Gallup Poll. While party diversity within our government would be ideal as it gives greater representation to those with differing opinions, Americans must treat third-parties with the same seriousness as our major parties and must not vote for third-party candidates based solely on their outsider status.

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Satire

New bus driver Ms. Frizzle put on leave due to horrifying adventure

If you’re cruising on down University, relaxing and feeling good, you might have been lucky enough to spot the University of New Mexico’s newest shuttle bus driver, Valerie Frizzle, known locally as Ms. Frizzle. Frizzle, although just recently hired, has also been put on temporary leave due to misconduct related to “adventuring.” Her employment at UNM has been questioned in less than a week since her hiring on Tuesday, March 26. Frizzle is a former elementary school science teacher who was searching for a career change. When the opportunity arose, she decided to begin driving shuttle buses for UNM, Frizzle said.

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Satire

UNM will include jousting after fatal prophecy is revealed

Hear ye, hear ye! Our noble queen, Garnett Stokes, proclaims the entry of the University of New Mexico into jousting tournaments following a dire prophecy uncovered by the wizards. These tournaments shall commence upon the eve of the blood moon, where challengers from neighboring universities and local warlords shall vie for glory. Whilst the tournaments shall primarily revolve around the noble sport of jousting, there shall also be contests of poem recitation and the drawing forth of the legendary sword, Excalibur, Stokes declared. The victors of these contests shall be bestowed with scrolls detailing fantastical quests, wherein the true reward lies in the friends they made along the way, Stokes declared.

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