ASUI passes bill funding free menstrual products

The ASUI Senate unanimously passed a bill Wednesday to use ASUI funds in support of providing menstrual products at no cost to students.

Sen. Samragyee Guatam sponsored the bill proposing an allocation of $300 from the senate allocation budget to help pay for menstrual hygiene products in all women’s and gender-neutral bathrooms in the Idaho Commons and TLC.

Under the bill, ASUI will only be contributing funds towards providing free products this semester. Universities of Idaho Facilities Department has worked closely with Guatam on the project and will continue to provide products free of charge.

In a survey distributed in October, 98 percent of responders said they would support free menstrual products on campus.

Guatam said she has received a tremendous amount of positive feedback on the project, and professors have reached out to help her make the project sustainable long term.

Guatam said that she believes ASUI should be a part of an initiative to support all student needs and invest in student wellness and success.

In other business, Sen. Hannah Spear proposed an amendment to the ASUI rules and regulations that would give the ASUI Pro Tempore the authority to mandate attendance at up to four events a semester for senators. This could include university events or trainings. The amendment was tabled for further discussion.

Sen. Jacey Bacon said she is fully in support of the bill, and that Senator’s should trust the Pro Tempore to pick events that will benefit the student body.

Spear also proposed an amendment stating the ASUI Vice President would have the freedom to implement small weekly accountability measures to keep up with the progress of senators. The bill passed after a 30-minute discussion.

Director of Student Involvement Shawn O’Neal urged the senate to come to a form of reconciliation that held members of the ASUI Senate accountable.

The Senate also discussed modification to a bill proposed last week to modify the ASUI Supreme Court. Discussion focused on whether or not Graduate students and Law students should be eligible to serve on the Supreme Court. The Senate tabled the bill for the next session.

Ellamae Burnell can be reached at arg-news@uidaho.edu or on Twitter @EllamaeBurnell

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