The Student Government Association (SGA) convened on May 4 at 9:30 p.m. in the G.M. Savage Memorial Chapel for a Star Wars-themed senate, with Union University President Samuel W. “Dub” Oliver in attendance, to consider three bills and nine resolutions.
Oliver opened the floor by referencing the verse of the year, 1 Corinthians 13:7, and reminding the members of the goal of the community to love each other well.
“I hope, even more than that, that we’ll be a community that lives out our love for one another. Not just in word, but in deed as well,” Oliver said.
Senate resolution 201-21—which supports the installation of security cameras at the entrances of all university buildings and across campus—garnered the most debate of any other resolution of the night. The resolution’s sponsors Merry Ashlyn Gatewood and Jess Bogle cited the small number of outdated, existing cameras putting a strain on Safety and Security (S&S), other local universities with considerable networks of security cameras, catching the university up with the times, and personal reports from students who felt unsafe on campus as reasons to adopt the resolution.
“The lack of security cameras really prevents [S&S] from being able to respond to events quickly and then later if there is, like, a police report filed, they don’t have any video evidence,” Gatewood said.
The sponsors spoke to an S&S officer who cited different incidents he had heard of that he believed could have been prevented or responded to more quickly with the presence of effective security cameras.
The debate centered around the students’ right to privacy, which some felt would be violated if there were security cameras on campus, versus the safety of the students. One student in favor of the resolution felt that the liberties that would be lost were outweighed by the safety that would be gained. The resolution passed with 93 in favor and 30 opposed.
Senate also considered resolution 201-14 which asked for larger toilet seats in the men’s quads. Zachary Bitterling was the sole sponsor and stated that the toilet seats in the men’s quads were down 2 and 1/2 inches from regular toilet seats.
“One of my friends actually complained about it. He walked all the way from [his dorm] to the Bowld to go to the bathroom,” Bitterling said.
The resolution was postponed indefinitely by two votes. In order for the resolution to be reconsidered, a member who originally supported the postponement must move to reconsider at the next senate meeting in the fall.
In addition to the security camera and toilet seat resolutions, the senate passed 10 other pieces of legislation:
Senate Bill 201-11 asking for $200 to the club volleyball team to fund a ball cart and new volleyballs.
Senate Bill 201-12 asking for $200 to Life139 to fund blessing bags, trips to Memphis and Nashville, and an end-of-year pizza party.
Senate Bill 201-13 asking for $130 to Sigma Tau Delta to fund a Torch release party.
Senate Resolution 201-15 “Asking that bulletin boards be added to White Hall and the Blasingame Academic Complex (BAC) and designated for student use.”
Senate Resolution 201-16 “Requesting the placement of wooden posts devoted to the hanging of portable hammocks.”
Senate Resolution 201-17 “Supporting the construction of a gaga ball pit.”
Senate Resolution 201-18 “Requesting the restoration of power outlets at the fountain by the PAC”, on the patio of Barefoots and on the patio of the library.
Senate Resolution 201-19 “To recommend that Union University extend the parking spaces located along the road between Bulldog Dr. and Lanese Dockery Dr. between Hammonds Hall, Heritage parking, and the BAC.”
Senate Resolution 201-20 “Supporting the establishment of a prayer network where professors and faculty will be able to access prayer requests from students and fellow faculty members.”
Senate Resolution 201-22 “Asking that Union University would change the move-out deadline from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. for the purpose of giving more time to students on move out day during the second semester.”
Photo by Lauren Steed