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ASUCI Senate votes to allocate additional funding towards UCI Dream Center

By Christina Acevedo

ASUCI Senate voted on Oct. 11 to support the UCI DREAM Center by issuing a letter to the university administration declaring their support for the center to receive additional funding.

Their decision to advocate for continued program funding is influenced by the critical role Senators believe the center fulfills at UCI; the resolution states, “The UCI DREAM Center provides many necessary functions for the most vulnerable students on campus, allowing them to receive legal services, counseling and professional development.”

Resolution R54-10  outlines the funding issue that the DREAM center is currently facing. Although funds are expected to last until the summer of the following year, additional funding has yet to be confirmed.

By demonstrating solidarity with the center through a written letter, ASUCI Senate will  vocalize their support of the DREAM Center’s expressed need for further financial assistance and pressure administration to take action.

In the legislation, ASUCI Senate declares that it “supports the UCI DREAM Center’s continued funding and the DREAM Center’s future initiatives to create new pathways to support non-DACA undocumented students.”

During the public comment section of the meeting, physics and astronomy professor Kevork N. Abazajian, urged the Senators to consider drafting a resolution that would publicly declare their opposition to those who wish for local police authorities in Irvine to enforce immigration law.

Referring to the over 600 DREAMer students attending UCI, Abazajian reminded Senators to consider the impact that this could have for those residing off-campus.

“I would suggest that ASUCI pass a similar resolution stating that they back the University of California policy… I think it would be a strong statement that we are not a campus that wants to be something that’s unsafe for people that are of undocumented status,” he said.

Two other comments were made following Abazajian’s remark, the first of which came from a student who hopes ASUCI will consider investing in a “Get Out and Vote” rally to encourage student voting. The other comment was made by a former ASUCI member who advised current Senators to consider the weight of their role and to discover what makes them passionate about their work.

After a presentation by statewide organizing director, Salih Muhammad, from the University of California Student Association about the association’s significance and ways that students can increase involvement in the UCSA, the Senators voted on and passed R54-07, a resolution that designates Rodrigo Patricio Quintas Linares as Senate Secretary.