NewsSGA stalls as positions remain unfilled

Dining, public relations and sustainability committees, among others, await new members
Gabriella GarrigaSeptember 12, 2019702 min
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Photo by Oliver Chapin-Eiserloh.

Last semester, the Student Government Association (SGA) lost a number of its members, including its vice president and treasurer. As the year ramps up, current senators and cabinet members are working to reorganize the structure SGA. After more senators and cabinet members are instated in the coming weeks, the structure will be revisited.

All SGA committees have been put on hold. Senior Ty Tinker, president of SGA, hopes to gain more members before starting new projects or continuing initiatives that began last year.

“SGA lost a lot of members. We lost more than half of our Cabinet and five senators, so the big objective of the beginning of this semester has been instating those positions. That was one of our biggest objectives was making sure we had the numbers for these projects,” Tinker said.

Senior senator Juana Suarez was part of the diversity committee last semester.

“We were feeling that there was concern that SGA wasn’t being considerate enough about diversity, so we would go talk to Alli [Roman] about how we could help,” Suarez said. Roman is the director of Diversity and Inclusion.

Since then, the committee has been put on hold. Sophomore senator Noor Rahman will be the chair of the diversity and inclusion committee once it’s reinstated.

“The main purpose is being a liaison on campus because we want the student groups to feel like they have some sort of connection to the Student Government Association. We’re just here as a helpful resource in case they need something. We can direct them to the right people, we can direct them to get funding or any questions that they might have especially the student groups that might be a bit smaller or just started,” Rahman said.

The committee formatting of SGA had undergone restructuring at the beginning of last semester. During that time, the committee in charge of menstrual products and sustainability were combined under the public relations committee.

Because the public relations committee has been disbanded, SGA will independently handle the menstrual products initiative (in which free menstrual products are placed in certain bathrooms around campus).

“The tampon and menstrual products initiative that we did was really successful, and we’re planning on keeping it implemented just because it was pretty easy and it’s been actually used a lot more than people thought. It’s a resource that we think we should keep on campus,” Rahman said.

Tinker confirmed that menstrual products have been ordered for the rest of the semester. They will be distributed by Facility Services, according to Tinker.

For now, sustainability concerns will be handled through the university’s sustainability committee. Tinker has recommended two senators to be on the committee who have yet to be confirmed by the university president.

“We have our own interests in sustainability through Student Government, but it’s tough without numbers and it’s a constant process. So, once we get new people in, we can get working and get back on that,” Tinker said.

Junior senator Kathryn Holy reflected on the work that the dining committee completed last semester.

“Last year, our two big pushes were implementing the halal chicken in Mabee and then decreasing the contamination with meat at the omelet station especially. This semester, we don’t have any projects we’re working on actively. Really we’re just trying to work on any complaints that come in as they come in because one of the biggest challenges with Mabee is there’s only so much we can do because we don’t work there,” Holy said.

Holy anticipates working closely with the public relations (PR) committee in the future.

“This semester, I think the biggest thing that’s going to change because we don’t have anything we’re actively working on is getting involved with some of the other committees more. One of the big things I think will be working with the PR committee and getting some of that feedback,” Holy said.

SGA meetings are normally held on Wednesdays at 6 p.m. in the Waxahachie Room in Coates Student Center.

Gabriella Garriga

| Class of 2021 | Majors: Sociology and Economics |

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