Over Zoom, Senate approves bill to amend Constitutional Council’s rules of order

March 10, 2020, 10:37 p.m.

The Undergraduate Senate approved a bill to amend the rules of order of the Constitutional Council at its last meeting of the quarter, held over Zoom just hours after the University announced it would move all spring quarter classes online “until further notice.” 

The amended rules of order are the recommendations of a review undertaken by the Constitutional Council “to update and modernize the rules.” 

“Due to an absence of an established ASSU parliamentarian and lack of adequate record-keeping, it is unclear which document is the current Constitutional Council Rules of Order,” reads the report on the recommended changes.

The changes clarify organizational and procedural guidelines for the Constitutional Council. They specify that the ASSU Constitution and by-laws overrule the rules of order, and that the council can override the chair by majority rule. 

The rules of order “now specify a standard of proof for factual allegations before the Council,” as well as specific procedures for filing complaints and holding trials, according to the report. 

The Senate also voted to approve a resolution in support of the University’s divestment from fossil fuel companies. According to Senator Anthony Duarte ’22, this resolution has slightly changed wording from the original version. It explicitly called on Stanford to divest publicly traded oil and gas companies within 90 days. 

“That’s the only language change,” Duarte said. “But I think it’s an important one to make because it very explicitly calls out what we’re trying to do, and there’s like no room for gray area.”

The Senate also voted to approve a resolution to endorse the renaming of Jordan Hall and a resolution in support of a proposed student advisory board on sexual violence and survivor support. 

The student advisory board would be “established to work with the provost and the ASSU to give continuous recommendations and feedback on comprehensive and continuous sexual violence prevention, survivor advocacy support and Title IX policy for the student community.” It would be able to send members to administrative meetings on sexual violence, survivor advocacy and Title IX policy, including provostial meetings, Residential Education meetings and ASSU meetings.

The board would also be able to “request a review of various programs and policies in this subject area conducted by the advisory board,” according to the resolution.

Contact Erin Woo at erinkwoo ‘at’ stanford.edu and Michael Espinosa at mesp2021 ‘at’ stanford.edu.

Erin Woo '21 is The Daily's Vol. 259 Editor-in-Chief. Born and raised in Atlanta, GA, she is studying communications and creative writing at Stanford. She has also reported for The Mercury News and WNYC. Contact her at eic 'at' stanforddaily.com.Michael Espinosa '22 is majoring in international relations. He's the head of The Daily's social media team, and editor for the University beat and also occasionally writes for sports, arts, and The Grind. He's the biggest Taylor Swift fan at Stanford and the proudest New Yorker you will ever meet. Contact him at mespinosa 'at' stanforddaily.com.

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