Senate considers Fair Trade, doesn’t censure Elections Commission

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The 17th ASSU Undergraduate Senate met officially as a group for the second time Tuesday night.

Elections Commission censure not passed

A bill was submitted to issue a censure on the Elections Commission for not complying with certain terms designated by the Senate and other controversy, including a website security flaw. Some Senators were disappointed that the Commission failed to display how much money voters would be approving in total for Annual Grants.

The Elections Commission defended its action, citing Article V, Section 1 of the Joint By-Laws, which states that the Commission can “devise and implement the procedures for carrying out all elections and elections operations.”

Because the previous Senate appointed the Elections Commission, it was in question what role the new Senate had to resolve this issue.

“A censure is unproductive… we can focus on moving forward,” said Senator Justice Tention ’18.

Some Senators argued that the Senate always has the responsibility to uphold legislation and apply consequences when order is broken.

“We have to look at it from the perspective of the student body,” said Senator Malcolm Lizzappi ’17.

In the end, the bill did not pass, but there was agreement to construct an elections handbook and to provide more oversight for future elections to avoid miscommunication.

Fair Trade resolution

Alysha Shivji BA ’13 MA ’15 has spearheaded the Stanford Fair Trade campaign to certify Stanford as a “Fair Trade University.” The campaign is in its final steps as it has worked with vendors on campus and sponsored educational activities.

According to Shivji, the campaign has completed four out of the five steps needed to become an officially certified University. The final step is passing a Resolution, which, according to Shivji, “the director of Stanford Dining has agreed to sign.”

The resolution itself advocates a commitment to the consumption or use of food and products that abide by sustainable and ethical practice.

Nanci Howe, the Associate Dean of Students and Director of Student Activities and Leadership, commented on the logistical challenges of implementing such a resolution given that “the University is very decentralized.”

Other affairs

ASSU Executive Vice President Brandon Hill ’16 announced the creation of a “G50” group, which will involve hosting a variety of student leaders to discuss campus climate and other pressing topics.

Senator Eni Asebiomo ’18, Chair of the Communications Committee, mentioned intentions for developing a Senate newsletter to increase transparency with the student body.

Contact Alex Bourdillon at abourdil ‘at’ stanford.edu.

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Alexandra Bourdillon '18 is a freshman from Cupertino, CA. When she's not eating waffles, she can be found reading tea leaves or quantifying the land-speed velocity of a swallow (African, not European). After Stanford she hopes to explore the world, although the Bay Area will always be her home. To contact Alexandra, email her at abourdil ‘at’ stanford.edu.