The UC Santa Barbara Associated Students Senate discussed and voted to table four bills during its Nov. 1 meeting.
The Associated Students (A.S.) Senate convenes weekly on Wednesdays in the University Center Flying A Studios Room to pass legislation and discuss campus and student issues.
The first bill, titled “A Resolution in Support of Ethical Free Speech Practices,” acknowledged that UCSB faculty have academic freedom and freedom of speech but condemned faculty who involve personal biases about global conflicts in their teaching when their class’ subject matter is unrelated to said conflict.
“Professors are entitled to pretty much say anything they want during class under the discretion of academic freedom and freedom of expression,” second-year computer science major, College of Engineering Senator and author of the bill Alvin Wang said. “The goal of this resolution isn’t to monitor and police professors, rather to remind them that specific types of free speech practices are unethical and should be condemned.”
When the Senate discussed the bill, Senator Diana Kero voiced her support of the resolution.
“I think it’s a beautifully written piece of legislation,” Kero said. “I fully support it, and I am super excited about it.”
The Senate decided to table the bill for one week so that Wang and second-year computer science major and Off-Campus Senator Ephraim Shalunov, the second on the bill, can make minor adjustments to the wording of the bill following suggestions from other senators present.
The three other bills the Senate discussed during the meeting were largely internal — A Bill to Revise A.S. Restorative Justice Policy, Bill to Amend College of Engineering Senator Legal Code and Bill to Revise Basic Needs Committee Legal Code.
A Bill to Revise A.S. Restorative Justice Policy, written by Wang and third-year chemistry major and Off-Campus Senator Eric Carlson, suggested that A.S. use a more restorative approach to violations of A.S. Legal Code by honoraria-earning members, rather than a traditional system of retributive justice.
The other two bills were to revise A.S. Legal Code, one amending the duties of the College of Engineering Senator and the other altering the responsibilities of the Basic Needs Committee.
All three bills were tabled until the Senate’s Nov. 8 meeting.
A version of this article appeared on p. 3 of the Nov. 9, 2023, print edition of the Daily Nexus.