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Student Senate passes resolutions regarding accessibility

Despite classes moving online, Student Senate has been holding paper meetings virtually. In their most recent meeting, the organization passed two resolutions regarding accessibility.

Student Senate announced they passed two resolutions involving accessibility on campus and textbook access in a press release on April 25. While nothing has been approved by the university yet, Student Senate created an outline of how the resolutions would be implemented.

Accessibility of Future Facilities Resolution 

David Daye, speaker of the assembly, said Student Senate reviewed constituency reports about how the provided access areas have not been up to student preferences. According to the Accessibility of Future Facilities Resolution (AFF), Bradley meets the requirements of the American Disabilities Act. 

“The ADA, while well-intentioned, is vague,” Daye said in an email. “Many of the buildings on campus are in compliance with the law, but as we stated in the resolution, are very inconvenient for those who might need access. We wanted to make sure that the university goes beyond just the bare minimum.”

Daye said that people notice how ramps are tucked away, elevators stop working, curbs are raised too high and braille is worn-down.

In the written motion, a key reason that accommodations on campus are necessary to assess is that affected students could be late or skip class if they have difficulty moving around campus.

The resolution won’t make an immediate change in the facilities as there is no funding being placed in the AFF resolution. However, the resolution is aiming to be proactive in the design of new projects.

Textbook Accessibility

Student Senate also passed the Textbook Accessibility Resolution, where students could rent out textbooks in the Cullom-Davis Library from the proposed spaced named Lydia’s Shelf. 

According to Kasey Walsh, former chairperson of academic affairs, Lydia’s Shelf has been in the making since last school year. She said the resolution’s goal is to offset any additional costs from required textbooks.

“Academic affairs has received a significant number of constituency reports most commonly related to the high cost of required course materials/textbooks,” Walsh said. “These were posed mostly as problems students were having individually, and this type of resolution could at least address these issues to a degree for all students.”

Guidelines that were proposed in the resolution will dictate what classes will qualify for the textbooks.

After researching methods of lowering the costs of textbooks for students, Student Senate outlined criteria for them to be included in the library. Books would have to be over $100, used in a Bradley Core Curriculum course or a course with high enrollment.

The proposal also indicates books could be rented out for two hours or even longer. However, they wouldn’t be taken out of the library.

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