GSC highlights shortcomings in Stanford’s COVID-19 response, votes to uphold anti-doxxing bill

Members of the Graduate Student Council (GSC) criticized Stanford’s approach to helping students and staff affected by COVID-19 during their meeting on Wednesday.

Advisers said they feel the University is not providing enough high-quality masks for faculty and staff, especially as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention evaluates updating mask recommendations to put on highlight the effectiveness of the N95 and KN95 masks amid the rise of the omicron variant. According to GSC co-chairman KC Shah JD ’22, residential and catering business staff at Munger’s senior residences primarily wore cloth and surgical masks.

Emily Schell, GSC advisor and fourth-year developmental science and psychology doctoral student, advocated for the University to provide high-quality masks to teaching assistants and graduate students due to the environment. high risk posed by a return to in-person classes. Schell also criticized what she called the University’s “haphazard” guidance regarding its phased reopening, which she said differed from one graduate school to another and was left mainly to the discretion of the students. instructors.

The University did not immediately respond to a request for comment regarding the implementation of the phased reopening plan.

Advisors acknowledged the creation of the Stanford University Associated Student COVID Isolation Assistance Program (ASSU), which aims to facilitate the delivery of “food, medicine, hygiene products and other necessities” to isolated students. The GSC criticized Stanford’s isolation policy, particularly regarding food delivery, at its meeting last Wednesday.

Advisers said providing students with free COVID-19 assistance was crucial, given the difficulty for students to access financial aid on campus. To receive financial support, students must obtain complete documentation, according to the GSC advisor and the third-year doctorate in aeronautics and astronautics. student Jason Anderson, who suggested that these bureaucratic barriers could be intentionally put in place by the University in order to reduce costs.

The University did not immediately respond to a request for comment on barriers to student access to financial aid.

Councilors also voted to pass four separate bills, beginning with the unanimous confirmation of Joshua Jankelow ’24 to the ASSU Constitutional Council. Jankelow emphasized that his rights-based philosophy guides his approach to the council, saying he believes the strength of ASSU’s constitution will serve to guide students in dealing with highly contentious issues.

Councilors also voted unanimously to confirm a bill that would clarify travel funding policies for student voluntary organizations (SVOs). Specifically, the bill would prevent funding policies from limiting VSOs to specific travel options like Uber, which advisers say are tied to environmental and affordability concerns.

Advisers also confirmed a bill that would ask the Faculty Senate to include doxxing as a violation of the Core Standard. Although a GSC adviser, Tim Vrakas ’21 MS ’22, questioned whether the broad definition of doxxing in the bill could harm people who call others for harassment, the GSC concluded that this concern would have little impact on the bill’s stated purpose of expressing disagreement with the Faculty Senate’s previous decision to file several anti-doxing recommendations. Vrakas also sits on the Daily’s board of directors.

“I agree that a lot of these things are in a gray area,” Schell said, adding that this shouldn’t impact the SGC’s efforts “to push back [the Faculty Senate] and formalize this repression.

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