TCU Senate Update | Cadley calls for civility in State of the TCU
Published: Monday, February 4, 2013
Updated: Monday, February 4, 2013 08:02
Tufts Community Union (TCU) President Wyatt Cadley delivered his State of the TCU adress at an early afternoon session yesterday, opening the speech by addressing
the Committee on Student Life’s decision to allow religious exceptions from the university’s nondiscrimination policy.
The Senate has considered three resolutions condemning the decision since Dec. 9, passing two and tabling one.
While Cadley commended the Senate for moving forward on the issue, he offered a note of disappointment over the body’s occasional breaches of civility in the emotionally charged debate.
“While we need not respect one another’s arguments, we must respect the dignity of our peers,” Cadley said. “We didn’t take our work too seriously, we took ourselves too seriously.”
Referencing his lengthy list of campaign promises, Cadley vowed to release a mid−semester progress report of which goals had seen completion. He also congratulated each member of the body by name for his or her individual accomplishments as senators.
The Senate added two new Community Representatives, junior Grainne Griffiths of the Women’s Center and sophomore Jonathan Paradise of the LGBT Center.
Several student groups also received funding. The Tufts chapter of Love146, an international non−profit working against the child sex trade, received $482 in New Group Funding to host a spring benefit concert and a “Broken Hearts” Valentine’s Day event. This was reduced from its original $1,000 request due to Senate rules on food budgeting and publicity and to reflect a change in venue of the Valentine’s Day event. The allocation passed by acclamation.
The Senate awarded Tufts University Television (TUTV) $2,300 for the unforeseen expense of buying five new cameras. The expense was seen as “mission−critical,” since the group will need to train new members with the cameras before veteran members graduate. The allocation passed by acclamation.
Student booking group Midnight (at Tufts) received $500 from the supplementary fund to book musical group Generations for a concert. The funding was granted by acclamation.
The TCU Judiciary was allocated $65 by acclamation to purchase office supplies.
The religious group Chabad at Tufts, which provides a free weekly dinner for students wishing to celebrate Shabbat, the Jewish day of rest, was granted a total of $3,100 for a live speaker and for an unforeseen expense of $1,600. Previously, the group had attended free dinners at Chabad of Medford, a family−run Jewish organization. After the Tufts group received a large boost in membership, Chabad of Medford requested a fee of $100 per week for setting and cleaning up the dinners, which now take place several days each week.
Senators debated the funding for nearly half an hour, with many expressing discomfort at the dilemma between regularly funneling money to an outside group and refusing to allow the 40 to 60 students to celebrate Shabbat; as Jewish dietary restrictions are quite strict, it would be difficult to hold Shabbat properly without outside aid. The funds were eventually granted in a vote of 10 yeses, one dissent, and eight senators abstaining. Senators generally agreed that the funds were a “Band−Aid” on the issue and that it ought to be resolved more proactively before the next budgeting cycle.