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ASI moves to protect undocumented students in senate meeting

Student government created a resolution to make USU and SWRC safe spaces.

James Chow, Staff Writer

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Despite Cal State Long Beach not being an official sanctuary campus, the Associated Students, Inc. has began undertaking “sanctuary practices.”

A move by the ASI Senate on Wednesday aims to establish safe spaces on campus for undocumented students.

Details in the resolution prohibit ASI employees of the University Student Union and the Student Recreation and Wellness Center from working with or providing information to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement that assist the federal agency in detaining undocumented students. The senate passed the  first reading of the resolution.

ASI Vice President Logan Vournas said during the meeting that the senate would involve the University Police Department in the resolution.

“We urge the university to take a clear stance on the implementation of a direct policy ensuring that the UPD would have no contact with ICE,” Vournas said.

Senator-at-large Daniel Gomez said he didn’t want undocumented students to feel like the Future Underrepresented Educated Leaders, La Raza and the Dream Center’s spaces wouldn’t be safe spaces as well.

“The reason why we chose these areas is because ASI has jurisdiction over [them],” Gomez said. “We aren’t saying that undocumented students shouldn’t go to FUEL, La Raza and the Dream Center. We want to show [the resolution] to [these organizations] to ensure open transparent dialogue, so they wouldn’t be taken aback.”

Richard Haller, ASI Executive Director, had a qualm about the resolution.

“I know we operate these facilities, [but] we don’t technically own them,” Haller said. “We lease [the buildings] from the CSU … and the land that they’re on are state funded..”

Facilities problems spark student worries

Also in the meeting, student senators voiced concerns of falling ceiling tiles and poor and dirty ventilation systems in the Fine Arts-4 building.

College of the Arts Senator Sofia Musman told the senate of Physical Planning and Facilities Management’s plans for the art building.

“During Spring Break, PPFM will remove ceiling tiles from two classrooms [in FA-4] and see how the sound is going to work for the rest of the semester,” Musman said. “There’s a lot of echo in the building.”

After participating in a walkthrough of the building, Gomez told the senate of the buildings’ faulty ventilation.

“One of the things [PPFM] will do is put air conditioning as well in the computer lab, which is full of Macs,” Gomez said. “We’re talking about really expensive software, and it was unbearably hot [in the lab]. There was a layer of dirt in the air conditioners.”

Gomez also told the senate that he believed PPFM isn’t taking the building issue as seriously as it should.

“They gave us this timeline in the beginning of the meeting, but as we went through the walkthrough, they said they’ll be busy in the summer and they’ll see where their priorities land,” Gomez said. “This should be their first priority.”

Art students have made art pieces with the building’s denigrating infrastructure. One photo, which was presented in the College of the Arts’ report, showed a sculpture of a guillotine made of fallen tiles.

ASI also passed for a final reading the resolution that encourages the university to allocate health resources for trans and gender nonconforming students, faculty and staff; and passed the second reading for a resolution to provide free menstrual products in all restrooms.

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