By Joshua Hernandez, May 4, 2021
The ASI Board of Directors discussed a resolution penned by ASI Vice President Manshaan Singh in response to the incident that occurred between the University Police Department and a student accused of falsifying a police report.
Dubbed the “Resolution Regarding University Police Department Capabilities to Properly Protect Students,” it stands in solidarity with the black student, private investigator and Police Advisory Task Force member Jeremy Manning, and affirms a vote of no confidence in the UPD’s capability to protect students and respond to complaints in an unbiased and equitable manner.
“As the student noted, a lot of time went by without replies to his complaints,” Singh said.
The resolution also calls for the Police Advisory Task Force to be given oversight capabilities regarding overall UPD policies, but not specific cases, as well as for the cessation of referring cases to the district attorney’s office without first referring the cases to the Office of Student Conduct and Integrity.
Singh added the resolution would establish a complaint process for the UPD so students can have their issues with the department heard, which would be formally established by a vote from a student body majority.
“In this resolution, we do state that currently as ASI, we do not believe in UPD’s capabilities,” ASI President Lucy Yu said. “I do want to emphasize the word currently, though; I personally will be making my vote based off of the fact that things will be changing administration to administration, and the fact that we do not currently think they’re as capable as they can be. I do think there is improvement every year in every department across campus.”
When Singh asked why cases are referred to the DA’s office first, University Police Chief Dario Robinson, who will be retiring on June 1, said it was because they were criminal matters, not administrative. Robinson also added that the UPD does not pronounce anyone guilty or innocent.
“There’s a whole criminal process that occurs on that side which we do not have anything to do with,” Robinson said in response to Singh.
“But that’s why we refer, so there’s a neutral, unbiased third-party.”
Robinson also added in regard to Manning’s case, the report was originally taken as a stolen credit card, but the department had to change it to a different title.
As for the unanswered emails Manning sent to Robinson and the Office of Student Affairs, Robinson said he did not respond because he assumed the other recipients were handling it.
“The ball was dropped because of different reasons,” Robinson said.
During the meeting, ASI Member Services Coordinator for Campus Recreation Scott MacLeod also announced some additions to the proposal to reopen the BRIC and provide access to students who could not use it while it was closed.
According to MacLeod, the BRIC will offer complimentary access to students enrolled in spring, summer and fall 2021 as soon as June 7 through August 13, though the dates are subject to change.
“We are putting a lot of effort into reopening the BRIC, and we want people to show up, and so we want to remove some of these barriers to entry, and one of those is the cost,” MacLeod said. “As summer is typically already low-usage, there’s concerns about people having interest to pay out of pocket when they’re not necessarily getting the full experience.”
Originally, the previous plan, that was approved last December, would give students who are not enrolled complimentary access. For every semester a student was enrolled while the BRIC was closed, they will be compensated with a semester of free membership to the BRIC, which can be redeemed consecutively until 2030.
However, the new proposal would allow students to receive another free membership per semester enrolled during spring or summer 2021, since the BRIC still will not be open at maximum capacity. Students will be required to place advance reservations to use the BRIC, and guests will be restricted to the third floor and the pool.
ASI also discussed the future use of the Cal Poly Federal Credit Union’s space at the Bronco Student Center, which is scheduled to close later this year as part of the merger with the SchoolsFirst Federal Credit Union.
According to Senator Pro-Tempore Susana Delgadillo, ASI decided to assign the space to another service or function, either for ASI or the university.
This option was recommended by the Facilities and Operations Committee, which Delgadillo said will have an ASI executive to propose an idea for how the space should be used and answer to the committee.
“We’ll also be sending out a form soon just to get a quick idea of what you would like the space to be seen, and hopefully next semester they could match it with the student needs as much as possible,” Delgadillo said.
In an effort to increase transparency, ASI Attorney General Matthew Jacobson discussed ASI’s recommended updates to its committee codes for Rules and Policies, Facilities and Operations, Governmental Affairs and Basic Needs, which are stored on Cal Poly Pomona’s PolicyStat page. The codes are not yet available to the public.
“There’s a large portion of them currently in there, but the goal is to eventually have everything in there, and it would be accessible to ASI staff, student government, and then it can also be opened up to students or anyone else on campus,” Jacobson said.
As for other updates, Vice President for Student Affairs Christina Gonzales said the on-campus study spaces program have proven itself successful so far, bringing in around 40 to 50 students daily.
Gonzales announced that the library has reopened in a limited capacity as of May 1; during the tier one pilot phase, students who are interested will have to schedule appointment before coming in.
“We wanted to make sure there was space available during finals week,” Gonzales said.
The ASI board will vote on the resolution regarding UPD, the BRIC proposal additions, approval for the ASI’s recommendation for the credit union space and the committee code updates at the last meeting on May 6.
As for any other upcoming events, they can be found on the ASI website. For students who want to stay up to date about the merger with SchoolsFirst, visit this page on the Cal Poly Federal Credit Union’s website.
Feature image courtesy of Matt Popovich.
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