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2012-2013 Legislative Actions

Review legislative actions for the 2012-2013 academic year.

Actions, which include resolutions, motions, votes and leadership changes, are listed in reverse chronological order with the most recent actions first. 

Vote: Revised Faculty Handbook Approved

June 5, 2013

We are pleased to report that the Faculty Senate and the Administration have agreed upon a significantly revised University Faculty Handbook to replace the 2001 University Faculty Handbook. After two readings, the Senate at its June 2012 meeting voted 49 to 1 to approve the revised Handbook that the Senate Handbook Committee and the Administration spent over 14 months completing.

See 2012 University Faculty Handbook. (Please note that this version is no longer current and is linked only for archival purposes.)

Motion: Compensation for Chair of the Senate

June 5, 2013

The Faculty Senate affirms that the Chair of the Senate should receive compensation in some form during the year that they are Chair commissary with the work involved with the position to be implemented 2013-14.

Motion: Call for Pardon and Release of Qatari Poet

May 1, 2013

Qatari Poet Motion

Motion (Reviewed and forwarded by the Social Responsibility Committee, April 2013):

Whereas the poet and University of Cairo student Mohammed ibn al-Dheeb al-Ajani was sentenced to life in prison (as reported by the BBC and The Guardian, Nov. 29, 2012) for a videotaped reading of a poem allegedly insulting the emir of Qatar Sheik Hamid bin Khalifa Al Thani and allegedly inciting the overthrow of the ruling regime (sentence subsequently amended to 15 years as reported by Al Jazeera English on Feb. 25, 2013);

Whereas Northwestern University supports the universal human right of persons to freedom of intellectual, political, and artistic expression;

Whereas Northwestern University and the United States of America support UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights Article 10 (“Everyone is entitled in full equality to a fair and public hearing by an independent and impartial tribunal, in the determination of his rights and obligations and of any criminal charge against him”) and Article 19 (“Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers”);

Whereas Northwestern University maintains an intellectual and institutional presence in Qatar through Northwestern University in Qatar or NU-Q;

It is resolved that the Faculty Senate calls for the full pardon and immediate release of Mohammed ibn al-Dheeb al-Ajani and supports freedom of intellectual and artistic expression for the people of Qatar.

Motion: Evanston Campuses to Become Smoke-Free

April 3, 2013

Proposal that NWU Evanston and Chicago campuses be made smoke-free

This proposal is based on the fact that dormitories and other university buildings on both campuses are currently smoke-free. Legally, those who smoke must leave the building and stand at least 25 feet away from the building entrance. This can sometimes make a cloud of smoke as a barrier for those entering the building. Making the campuses smoke-free will eliminate this smoke barrier. Therefore, the Benefits Committee recommends that Northwestern University make both the Evanston and Chicago campuses smoke-free zones. The proposed start date is September 1, 2013.

Vote: Endorse Requirement Amendment and ASG Resolution

April 2, 2013

Social Inequalities and Diversities Requirement

Motion to amend to strike the last sentence in the introduction: It is our hope that students who will have fulfilled this requirement will have been changed in a way that makes them distinctly Northwestern.

Social Inequalities and Diversities Requirement - Draft

ASG resolution: Complete Divestment from Coal

On April 3,2013 the Faculty Senate voted to endorse the document presented by the ASG students "Implementing the Northwestern Strategic Plan: Establishing Northwestern as a Global Leader in Environmental and Financial Sustainability."

The Associated Student Government (ASG) Senate have been working on a resolution asking Northwestern to divest from coal at this time, and fossil fuel industries long term. This movement is happening on more than 200 campuses across the US and in other countries, but the movement also affects anyone who has money invested in fossil fuel industries. This initiative is related to climate change. The ASG solicited support from the Faculty Senate.

Implementing the Northwestern Strategic Plan: Establishing Northwestern as a Global Leader in Environmental and Financial Sustainability