In a unanimous vote, the Undergraduate Council of Students passed the Campus Consent Bill at the council’s general body meeting Wednesday night.
The bill dictates that every Category III student group must have at least one member of its executive board trained by the Sexual Assault Peer Education program by Spring 2018. Category III student groups risk their UCS funding and classification if they do not comply with the bill’s conditions.
UCS President Viet Nguyen ’17 hopes the trained club member, referred to as the SAPE liaison, will share the training with other members of the group. The liaisons “will be given the tools to opt into doing a full-on presentation for their student group,” Nguyen said.
“It’s not random people coming into your group and asserting their own values,” Nguyen said, adding that the liaison will be “someone from your group who is trained to talk about how community and cultural norms can shift to address rape culture, both at Brown and at its smaller communities.”
“We understand that for true change to happen, especially in communities, it can’t be forced,” Nguyen said, adding that student interest is integral to the program’s success. This semester, SAPE will run a pilot program with roughly 30 student groups that volunteered to participate. The program is intended to be fully implemented by Spring 2018.
In an effort to raise student enthusiasm for the bill, UCS reached out to club leaders two weeks before the start of the 2016 academic year. By the beginning of Wednesday’s meeting, the bill had received endorsements from 98 student groups.
“Ninety-eight (clubs) — I don’t think that’s ever been done before. It shows there is high demand and (the bill) is a necessity,” Nguyen said. At the end of the vote, two more student clubs had endorsed the bill, raising the total number of endorsements to 100.
After five questions from current UCS members, including questions about topics covered by SAPE training, the bill passed unanimously with no abstentions.
At the meeting, Nguyen also announced that the Counseling and Psychological Services had chosen a new director, William Meek. Meek will be on campus tomorrow for a dinner and to tour the CAPS facilities and Brown’s campus.