Three boycotts all enacted within the last several years were challenged at the Associated Students Legislative Council meeting on Wednesday when some council members questioned whether the boycotts were still necessary.
The possible repeal of a grape boycott enacted in the beginning of 1993 drew a group of students, including the original author of the bill, to the meeting, where they asked Leg Council to keep the bill in its Financial Policies and Procedures.
The original bill was written in response to the United Farm Workers’ (UFW) international boycott of California Table Grapes, which started in 1984. Reasons for the boycott include the poor treatment of farm workers and health risks associated with the pesticides used on the grapes.
Several UCSB students went on a 10-day hunger strike in 1993 to show their support of the boycott. Although the strike and boycott are now over, the bill states that if a similar boycott is enacted, the boycott will be reenacted.
Off-Campus Representative Joshua Baker, who authored the bill, said the pesticides are no longer legal in California and the strike is no longer necessary.
“I have a complete respect for the history behind this,” Baker said. “This has nothing to do with the hunger strike that happened seven or eight years ago.”
A second boycott against Mitsubishi was also debated. The original bill was written in 1997 because of Mitsubishi’s alleged forest destruction. One provision of that bill states that the Environmental Affairs Board must submit quarterly reports until the boycott is declared over, which Baker said has not happened.
The third boycott elimination act refers to a boycott in 1998 of R and P Printing after they refused to print Herstory, a UCSB literary magazine, due to what the printing company called its explicit content. Off-Campus Rep Martin Doyle said the magazine was pornographic and commended the company’s decision to not print the material.
“Bravo R and P Printing,” Doyle said. “You deserve an award.”
Leg Council also discussed a bill that would end its current ability to place a lock-in fee on the ballot for the next three years, after which the moratorium would be reconsidered. The bill will only affect lock-ins passed through A.S. It would not affect student groups who collect the necessary amount of signatures, or groups with existing lock-in fees who wish to increase them.
According to the bill, ASUCSB has more lock-ins than any other UC campus and is experiencing a financial crisis that could be strained by more administrative costs.
“The intent of this bill has been misinterpreted by many,” Off-Campus Rep Jonathan Kalinski said. “This will not ban lock-ins.”
All of these bills will be discussed at next week’s Leg Council meeting on Wednesday, Feb. 6, at 6:30 p.m. in the Flying A Room of the UCen.