ASB Student Senate approves award money, discusses sexual assault

The Associated Student Body Student Senate voted to approve $418.75 in awards for board members at its End-of-the-Year banquet and approved several resolutions at Thursday’s meeting.

Director of Activities Luciana Curtis presented the board with the different quotes given to her by trophy and awards companies. The board decided to go with a $418.75 quote from Crown Awards, which includes $36.45 for one knock award, $219.35 for 13 awards for the senators, $42.65 for one president’s award, $45 for a gavel, and $75 for the logo.

“I just think it’s phenomenal how cost effective you guys have been able to plan the awards section of this,” CAEB President Jeremy Diefenbacher said. “I think we should give them a round of applause.”

Several members of the Student Senate clapped.

The Student Senate also approved President Kenneth Hinton’s revised budget for the year along with resolutions in support of a bully-free campus, bully-free workplaces and more benefits for adjunct faculty and staff.

Lydian Countryman, president of Fierce, urged the Student Senate to take action on the sexual assaults that have been occurring around campus.

“Rape has become a very huge issue here on campus,” Countryman said. “As someone who has survived rape myself, it is a very big issue to me. There are a lot of very concerned women here on campus and just two days ago a young woman who I think may be a student here was brutally assaulted and raped inside the Subway at Auburn and Palm.”

“I would like to present to the board: Please represent our student voice. Please do something towards the administration and faculty,” she added.

“I am disgusted by this. I don’t feel safe,” Director of Public Relations Daniela Vargas said. “I don’t take night classes because of that. I want to do something about this as a board. I want to extend to you creating a resolution and working with campus police.”

A few moments before the roll call, Diefenbacher and Director of Finance Jorge Riley were arguing when they were cut off by advisor Tanika Byrd, who advised the student leaders to “center yourself. Think about how you’d like to present yourselves as professionals. Okay?”

Byrd then had the Student Senate remain silent for five seconds. Director of Legislative Affairs Ross Rayala interrupted with an “Om” chant common to Buddhism.

During the public comment section of the meeting, Diefenbacher read a letter he wrote to the editor of the Current, saying that Riley was engaged in “martyrdom” and “self publicity.”

Members of the Senate and the public expressed concern over the editorial cartoon that appeared in the March 26 issue of the Current. The cartoon depicted a student saying “No means no!” to a petitioner above an editorial regarding aggressive petitioners on campus. The placement of the cartoon next to a story headlined “Poor resources for rape victims” upset some Senate members.
“I wanted to know if there was some way that this board could find a way that we can hold the newspaper staff accountable for stuff,” Diefenbacher said. “I don’t know what their accountability system is because I kind of feel like there isn’t one at this point.”

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About the Author

John Ferrannini
John Ferrannini is a fourth-semester student on the Current, where he serves as Editor-in-chief. He previously served as managing editor and News editor. John is majoring in journalism and plans to transfer to Sacramento State.

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