Update: A Message to the SU/ESF Community

We are looking for accountability from the administration. Last Tuesday, THE General Body reached out to Chancellor Syverud requesting a meeting with him and his executive team (The full text is at thegeneralbody.org). Despite having publicly stated that his administration is committed to working with us, they instead emailed saying we would be hearing from liaisons who have no relevant decision-making powers or accountability to the items the administration agreed to address last semester.

Most of the issues which led us to take action last fall have not been resolved. Unfortunately, even more issues have arisen since then, demonstrating that the administration has learned little from recent community outcry. They continue to make decisions which negatively affect the SU community, as evidenced by (in necessary abbreviation, as there are SO many issues we could mention):

  • The new health insurance mandate, which affects all undergraduate and graduate students, especially low-income students.Graduate TA/RA/GAs will pay more money for worse health care coverage.
  • The recently-proposed $495 million sports stadium, alongside claims that SU doesn’t have the money to hire additional counselors, staff at the LGBT Resource Center, or continue its original commitment to scholarship programs like POSSE.
  • No public budget proposal or timeline for implementing thedirectives of the Chancellor’s Workgroup on Sexual Violence Prevention, Education, and Advocacy.
  • Inconsistencies regarding cancellation of SU Study Abroad programs, in particular, Paris Noir.
  • The drugging of four SU Law students by a fellow law student(s), and these reported incidents’ mishandling by the administration, which has failed to provide timely and adequate information on student survivors’ rights under the Clery Act and Title IX. These reports have not yet been publicly addressed by the administration.
  • The lack of transparency and collaboration around the SU Mission/Vision Statement and Strategic Plan.

We’d like to continue working with all interested groups, including the Chancellor and his executive team, in creating the kind of university where all students, faculty, staff and community members are valued and respected–not in word, but in collaborative action. We again call on the Chancellor and his executive administration to meet with us to be accountable to items they said they would address, and come to agreements on those they ignored. Among other upcoming events, we are holding a Press Conference on Tuesday, April 7 and a rally on April 14th. Look for more information and get involved! We invite you to be part of this movement. Follow us on Twitter and check back on this blog for frequent updates.

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