Ohio University Student Senate passed a bill Wednesday that expresses its support for the Ohio Fairness Act.

The act, also known as House Bill 160, aims to change anti-discrimination laws to include sexual orientation, gender identity and gender expression as protected classes, according to the American Civil Liberties Union of Ohio

“We live in a nation where equal opportunity is supposed to be the main goal, and for the past few hundred years it has never been,” Senate Historian Nicolas Paredes said. “I think that this bill is a step toward that goal.” 

Senate voted to table a bill that would express support for the tax exemption of college textbooks. 

Part of the bill asks the Board of Trustees to introduce similar legislation within its body. Senate members voted to table the bill until they could get more specific information about funding at the local and state levels. 

Student Senate President Landen Lama gave an update from the Joint Police Advisory Council about increasing lighting on campus. He said that a formal request was submitted to add two lights behind Bryan Hall. A lamp post was constructed behind Bentley Hall, but it has not been connected to electricity yet. 

After reviewing sexual assault reports from the past five years, Student Senate Vice President Nicole Schneider noticed that Jeff Hill and the graffiti wall behind Bentley were common locations for assaults. She said more lighting and possibly surveillance cameras are needed in those places.

The body passed three resolutions amending the Student Senate constitution. 

“The new constitution is anticipated to be about 15 pages long,” Lama said. 

One of the resolutions added a section to the constitution describing Students Defending Students’ role as an entity within Senate. 

The body also passed a resolution that will purchase office supplies for the Student Senate office.



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