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SGA presents more bills highlighting LGBTQ and disabled student resources


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SGA Senate Leader Nolan Kamoo asks representatives and senators on whether they would like to move on to a new bill during an SGA meeting via WebEx on April 5, 2021.

More pieces of legislation were introduced a week before the deadline to Central Michigan University's Student Government Association during their meeting on April 5.

SGA discussed the status on previous legislation. The new bills focused on providing resources on-campus resources the university could offer minority groups.

Legislation going through CMU

The revised mission statement passed through SGA was sent to President Bob Davies. He approved the legislation and forwarded it to the Board of Trustees, SGA Vice President Brandon McDonald said.

More pieces of legislation were introduced a week before the deadline to Central Michigan University's Student Government Association during their meeting on April 5, 2021.

SGA discussed the status on previous legislation. The new bills focused on providing resources to minority groups on campus could offer.

Academic Senate's executive board looked over the closed captioning legislation, but requested that wording be changed, McDonald said. 

The concern was over the title. It stated "A Resolution to Require the Use of Automatic Closed Captions in Online Lectures," which Academic Senate said the word "require" would be interpreted to change the curriculums of all classes this year. To address this, SGA voted to change the wording to "Strongly Supported the Use and Promotion of" to inform professors of the option.

"If it doesn't pass, nothing is going to happen for these last five weeks or over the summer," McDonald said. "If we pass this, we're hoping to see some immediate effects of faculty (turning on closed captions)."

New legislation

SGA Rep. Nova Moore authored two bills fashioned after the previous bill suggesting an IMPACT-like program for both disabled and LGBTQ+ students. 

According to the bills, they both wanted an orientation for the demographics that would point out resources on campus during Welcome Weekend. However, the LGBTQ+ resources bill would also introduce a mentorship program to help incoming students. 

The mentors would be volunteers who completed at least a year at CMU and would be overlooked by the Office of LGBTQ Services and Gender Equity Program, the bill read.

"This will allow students to learn about resources that are provided to them on campus, become more comfortable with the campus itself, and gives them the ability to meet with other students who are going through similar struggles," it said.

SGA Rep. Jesse Bair said that Spectrum, an LGBTQ+ Registered Student Organization, supports the legislation as it would curb some difficulties for them.

"We actually had to go out of our way to find some of the resources," he said. "If we had to go out of our way to find it, I don't even want to imagine what just any individual student would have to do to get this information."

On the other hand, the legislation supporting resources for disabled students called for the creation of an "advocacy group of students, complete with a student board," it said.

The group would be a "safe space for disabled students" and direct students towards the necessary resources. It also advocates for the university providing "(increased) communication between Student Disability Services and professors on campus."

During discussion, Rep. Katelyn King said that there were two slides in orientation directed at guiding students to Student Disability Services.

"(It) doesn't sound like a lot, but it is a lot for the limited amount of slides that actually mentioned Student Disability Services directly," King said.

Moore, the author, said that they would look into how orientation approaches disabled students. They would take out the orientation section of the disabled student resources legislation if it's already addressed.

Other business

April 12 is the last day to submit legislation to SGA. April 12 is also the inauguration of the SGA's new executive board consisting of SGA presidential candidate King, vice presidential candidate Dylan Baker, and treasurer candidate Olivia Schwartz.

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