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AN INDEPENDENT STUDENT NEWSPAPER SERVING THE GW COMMUNITY SINCE 1904

The GW Hatchet

Serving the GW Community since 1904

The GW Hatchet

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After debate, SA Senate supports Latino Heritage Celebration

Sen. Brady Forrest, CCAS-G, sponsored a bill written by a coalition of Latino student groups to support the month-long Latino Heritage Celebration. Jordan McDonald | Hatchet Staff Photographer
Sen. Brady Forrest, CCAS-G, sponsored a bill written by a coalition of Latino student groups to support the month-long Latino Heritage Celebration.
Jordan McDonald | Hatchet Staff Photographer

The Student Association Senate passed a resolution to support the month-long Latino Heritage Celebration on Monday night.

The resolution could set a precedent for more resolutions to be written on the eight other multicultural celebrations held throughout the academic year, some senators said.

Sen. Brady Forrest, CCAS-G, and Sen. Nancy Mannebach, U-At Large, debated the language of the two-page resolution for about 45 minutes. It passed with 11 votes and five abstentions after other senators voiced their opinions.

The resolution, which was sponsored by Forrest, was written by leaders of the Organization of Latino American Students, as well as nine other Latino student groups, to proclaim that the SA Senate “fully supports the Latino Heritage Celebration.”

Some leaders of Latino student groups spoke to the senate about the significance of the celebration, which is run by the Multicultural Student Services Center, during public comment.

Mannebach said the purpose of the resolution was “great,” but that seven of the 12 preambles about Latino history, including one that asked the SA Senate to “condemn past injustices and view them as counter the mission statement” of GW, should be struck from the resolution.

“I just don’t think the Student Association is the right place or forum to kind of condemn everything the U.S. has done wrong in its history,” she said.

Forrest said it would be ironic to eliminate the history of the Latino Heritage Celebration from the resolution because the University did not formally recognize the celebration until 2000, four years after it was first held on campus.

Sen. Melissa Lawrence, CCAS-U and the SA representative for cultural, ethnic and religious organizations, said while she “had a pause” when she initially read the resolution, she supported it fully.

“It talks about erasure and that’s technically what we’re doing,” she said of the debate to remove the resolution’s historic context.

And the senate agreed to formally eliminate the Marvin Center Governing Board from its bylaws on Monday night. Sen. Thomas Falcigno, U-CCAS, sponsored the resolution, which came after the committee was replaced by a SA cabinet position in April.

The senate also unanimously confirmed Zachary Ruckert as vice president for graduate student policy. Ruckert served as executive director of communications of the GW Residence Hall Association for two years.

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