Student Association

‘Sanctuary campus’ bill to be deliberated in upcoming SA meetings

Zach Barlow | Staff Photographer

The Syracuse University Student Association will be discussing a bill of support for SU declaring itself a "sanctuary campus" on Monday.

The Syracuse University Student Association assembly is expected to vote Monday on a bill calling for SU to declare itself a “sanctuary campus” after tabling a vote on the bill in December at the end of last semester.

SA assembly member Marcus Lane did most of the work on the bill, titled “Call for Syracuse University To Be a Sanctuary Campus.” The bill was not voted on because SA officials had not looked over the bill before the December meeting.

SA President Eric Evangelista said in a recent interview that SA will re-examine the bill on Monday.

The term “sanctuary campus” has become popular since the election of President Donald Trump, who frequently used harsh and controversial rhetoric regarding immigrants and refugees during his campaign. Syracuse Mayor Stephanie Miner recently reaffirmed that Syracuse will remain a sanctuary city during her 2017 State of the City address on Jan. 12.

Despite calls for him to do so, SU Chancellor Kent Syverud has not declared SU a sanctuary campus.

“I think it is pretty clear what the campus pulse is on this issue,” said James Franco, SA’s chair of academic affairs. “It is now up to see if the assembly votes in favor of it and reflects that campus feeling.”

While Franco said he believes that a vote would be passed, he pointed out there are also students and faculty opposed to the bill.

“It also kind of speaks to the fundamental question of being a representative for those that are not in favor of it,” Franco said. “Do you vote for what you believe to be right, or do you vote to genuinely reflect your constituents?”

New cabinet members could also be appointed at Monday’s meeting.

The Chair of Board of Elections and Membership and the Parliamentarian are two positions that are currently vacant following resignations toward the end of last semester. Those positions might be filled during the meeting, Franco said.

Looking ahead to the rest of the semester, Franco added that he is excited for the upcoming months and some of the initiatives SA has been working on, including one to reassess the freshman forums. The goal is to make them “more effective and good experiences for all students in all colleges,” he said.

The initiative to extend library hours will also hopefully be completed, allowing libraries to be open longer during busy weeks such as midterm week, Franco said.

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