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Senate addresses sexual violence, honor code after deciding to fund Chanel Miller event

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In addition to approving $30,000 of funding for a campus event featuring Chanel Miller, the Undergraduate Senate also discussed sexual assault prevention and honor code language in their Tuesday meeting. 

Senators passed a resolution to address cases of sexual violence, a bill to establish a “Stanford University Outstanding Veteran of The Year Award” and a resolution to reconsider intent in honor code judicial proceedings. 

The resolution to address cases of sexual violence, proposed by Senator Mia Bahr ’22 was approved unanimously. The resolution was backed by the sponsorship of all Fraternity and Sorority Life (FSL) organizations as well as the sophomore, junior and senior class cabinets. 

The resolution seeks to address the results of the Campus Climate Survey, the increased number of date rape drugs on campus and affected students who feel unsatisfied by the University’s reaction. It advocates for a unified student body response to these recent events. 

Among its proposals, the resolution demands support for survivors who are not affiliated with Stanford, and for the University to ensure that victims and perpetrators will not be treated by the same counselor or at the same time. 

Additionally, the bill proposes town hall meetings to foster conversations between the Associated Students of Stanford University (ASSU) and relevant student groups to further dialogue regarding on-campus sexual assault.

According to Bahr the bill seeks to create specific and pointed goals that will tangibly improve the lives of Stanford students by opening up a conversation between administration and student groups. 

“I wrote this regulation based on what happened to me as a survivor my freshman year, for my friends and the people who I know have been affected including men, women and non-binary folk.” Bahr said. “It’s mostly a symbolic step, but it also shows that there is a huge potential for change.” 

The senate also returned to a resolution to review the role of intent in honor code judicial proceedings, passing it unanimously. The resolution was passed on to a committee of 10 people who will be reviewing the honor code this year. 

The current honor code language states, “regardless of the accused student’s intent, it is his/her responsibility to follow the rules set forth by the instructor and/or under the Honor Code whenever he/she submits academic work.” According to the authors of the bill, this line downplays the role of intent in the current honor code and should be reviewed. 

Furthermore, Senate approved the bill to establish the “Stanford University Outstanding Veteran of The Year Award,” which will seek to honor a student veteran for their outstanding contributions. The award will be presented annually by the Office of Military Affiliated-Community (OMAC) on Nov. 11.

According to Senator Sam Schimmel ’22, who proposed the bill, the next steps will include talking to the Graduate Student Council for their backing. 

“It is important to honor the commitment that our fellow students have made to us and to this country,” Schimmel said. “This is a way that we can honor these choices.”

Contact Emilia Diaz-Magaloni at emilia2 ‘at’ stanford.edu.