With the Spring semester well underway and the first signs of foliage peeking out in the arboretum, there is the spirit of discourse suffusing campus–it’s Plenary season. At the biannual event held this Sunday, March 27, students will consider three resolutions concerning essential parts of life at Haverford.
Students’ Council Co-heads Amolina Bhat ’23 and Sam Aronson ’22 already have one successful Plenary under their belt and are hoping to replicate its efficiency with similarly truncated Rules of Order; a shorter time limit, an abbreviated pro-con debate, and electronic voting should all help the event run smoothly. This plenary will see the return of the friendly amendment process, which was removed before the gathering last Fall.
Once quorum is reached and rules of order ratified, the student body will move through the resolutions as follows:
Resolution #1: Addition of Officer of Accessibility and Disability Inclusion to Students’ Council
This resolution, sponsored by the student disability advocacy group DASH, establishes a new role on the Students’ Council to represent students with disabilities. This role is designed for a student in the disability community and with experience in advocacy.
Student organizers see this role as elevating considerations for accessibility in Students’ Council decisions. Prioritizing the livelihoods and needs of students with disabilities has been DASH’s mission since they were established earlier this year. At that time, they critiqued the College’s COVID policy for making classes inaccessible to immunocompromised students.
Resolution #2: Abolition of Campus Safety
Laura Mercedes ’24, Naren Roy ’23, and Luka Austin ’24 are sponsoring the second resolution on the agenda. This resolution declares student views towards Campus Safety as looking toward abolition, though it does not abolish Campus Safety outright. Instead, it advocates moving a segment of their funds to a set of alternative sources for student support.
The declaration of this resolution is straightforward: it is abolitionist. The resolution invites administrators to invest in alternate forms of ensuring student safety on campus. Specifically, it calls for increased numbers of medical and mental health professionals to be on-call. It also requests an expanded facilities department and additional personnel.
Unlike many resolutions, which, when passed by the student body, can be either accepted, accepted with stipulations, or rejected by the President of the College, this resolution clarifies that the resolution cannot be accepted with stipulations.
Resolution #3: Reimagined Alcohol Policy With JSAAPP Responsibilities (RAP-WJR)
The final resolution of the proceedings, sponsored by Joint Student-Administration Alcohol Policy Panel (JSAAPP) Co-Heads Lara Deuber ’23 and Augustus Helson ’23, updates the alcohol policy in response to recent case law and the College’s legal obligations around alcohol consumption. The resolution also codifies JSAAP in more specific terms than the current alcohol policy.
A notable change to the document is the removal of elements concerning sexual misconduct and violence, which are supposed to be handled by other organizations. Several administrative clauses are stricken from the policy under this resolution, but the core ethos of the policy is unchanged.
The re-upped JSAAPP will have more members, more clearly defined responsibilities, and regular communicative duties. JSAAPP will also serve as a mediator when a student confrontation over a violation of the alcohol policy fails to settle the issue independently.
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