The GUSA Senate passed an act to establish a new committee creating a formal relationship between the Black Leadership Forum (BLF) and GUSA at their meeting on Nov. 23. The act also establishes a new GUSA-run bank account to allocate money to BLF-organized programs and events.
The BLF is a coalition of student organizations, such as the Black Student Alliance and the African Society of Georgetown, that plan events for Black students at Georgetown. In addition to supporting the programming of member organizations, the BLF facilitates its own programming and advocates for Black student interests.
Sens. Makayla Jeffries (COL ’23), a co-facilitator of the BLF, Leo Rassieur (COL ’23), and Leo Teixeira (COL ’21) introduced the act. They noted the act was developed in close collaboration with the BLF.
The committee established by the act, called the Georgetown Advocating for Activist Support Committee on Aiding Black Community Activism Through Resource Funds, is responsible for strengthening the relationship between the BLF and GUSA. The five student members of the committee will review the BLF’s requests to co-sponsor events with GUSA, maintain regular communication with both GUSA and BLF leadership, and identify sources of funding for the new account. The act recommends the majority of the students on the committee are Black and requires that at least one student is a member of GUSA.
Students on the committee must also manage the new account, called the G.A.A.S. Account. If BLF suggests GUSA co-sponsors an event or initiative, the committee will determine whether and how much money will be allocated to the event.
Funds for the account will come from GUSA’s general budget as well as from sources identified by the committee through the committee’s outreach efforts, including alumni networks and university departments.
The act argues this new account will support the BLF’s programming and demonstrate GUSA’s commitment to student activism. “[The committee] will institutionally empower activists and organizers to take advantage of the resources which GUSA possesses,” it reads.
The act passed unanimously with no abstentions. No senators spoke in opposition to the act.
Additionally, three students were confirmed as representatives to the Ethics & Oversight committee. Ramses Pena (COL ’23), Mason Leath (COL ’24), and Dakyung Ham (COL ’22) were all confirmed.
The Senate will hold its next meeting on Dec. 6 at 6 p.m. EST over Zoom.