Temple Student Government’s Parliament approved four resolutions at their bi-weekly meeting on Monday.
The legislative body, which has struggled with filling seats and passing resolutions, has to still appoint five representatives and has passed one other resolution this semester, a procedural resolution allowing Parliament’s secretary to vote on future resolutions.
On Monday, Parliament passed resolutions about Temple University Graduate Students’ Association, allocations for galas and banquets, sanitary bins in women’s bathrooms and a task force about Americans with Disabilities Act compliance.
Student Body President Francesca Capozzi could not be reached for comment.
Parliament voted to affirm support of TUGSA amid a proposal by the National Labor Relations Board that prevents graduate students at private universities from unionizing, which does not apply to Temple.
The proposal, published on Sept. 23, specifies that graduate students at private universities who conduct teaching or research in connection with their studies cannot be classified as employees, barring them from forming a union.
The resolution calls on TSG to advertise TUGSA’s petition, which calls on the Temple to release a statement in support of graduate students.
Ratujit Raviprakash, the Fox School of Business representative, was the only member to not vote for the resolution.
“My view of the situation is there is really no rhyme or reason to act on this right now,” Raviprakash wrote in an email.
“In short, I wanted more info and color on the issue before blindly putting our support behind this initiative,” he added.
Evan Kassof, TUGSA’s president, who spoke on Monday, said he was excited to see the resolution passed.
“It’s really inspiring to see that we’re part of that bigger movement that this parliament has taken because it was their vision to really make effective change,” Kassof said.
“While the university is supportive of its graduate students, we feel it important to note that the NLRB proposal does not apply to public universities like Temple,” wrote Ray Betzner, a spokesperson for the university, in an email.
After tabling the resolution last month, Parliament unanimously passed a bill recommending the executive branch change its guidelines to allow galas, formals and banquets that are open to the public and advertised as such be eligible for allocations, or funds that TSG gives to student organizations to finance their operations and public events.
Temple added the rule this summer. TSG cannot change the rule on its own, so the resolution is a recommendation.
“Do I think the passing of this amendment is going to change things tomorrow? No,” said Junior Dufort, an at-large representative and the resolution’s author. “But I think it’s still important because I do think it will change things in the long run.”
Gardner said the university will likely not change their mind on the issue.
“I can’t imagine them, because ultimately, our move is a recommendation,” Gardner said. “But I do think regardless, our vote is important because we represent the students.”
Parliament approved a resolution calling on the executive branch to hold Temple Facilities Management accountable for installing sanitary bins in all women’s bathrooms across campus.
Maya White, the College of Public Health representative, and Megan Shaud, its senior representative, have met with Facilities Management staff and secured an agreement with them to install bins in every publically accessible stall on campus.
“It’s just really exciting that Temple’s been so responsive to us trying to make this available to everybody,” White said.
John Johnson, Temple’s associate vice president for service operations, said Facilities Management is working on installing the bins.
“They brought it to our attention,” he said. “We thought this was something that needed to be addressed.”
ADA TASK FORCE
The legislative body also unanimously passed a resolution to create a task force to improve access to buildings on campus for students with disabilities.
Some students with disabilities told members of Parliament that they could not access certain parts of buildings or bathrooms, Gardner said.
“We just want to make sure we’re holding the university accountable,” he added.
The task force, which will be comprised of members of Parliament, the executive branch and faculty, will be tasked with assessing whether buildings are compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act, according to the resolution. If it finds buildings not in compliance, it will report the findings to the Board of Trustees.
Jonathan Atiencia, the disability resources representative, has been working on renewing the task force since the summer.
“I’m excited to bring this back and make the ADA task force a yearly thing to check all buildings and campus, and every new building in the future,” Atiencia said.