On Wednesday Nov. 5, the Office of Student Legislative Affairs met in room D106 for their monthly public hearing for student input. This meeting was an opportunity to gave information about the recent vote taken in Washington. The OSLA hearing is for the students who are interested in things relating to legislative issues or have concerns about past or future elections. ASG Vice President Teague Crenshaw started off the meeting with a brief welcome and an overview of the results from the most recent vote, which included the names of elected senators and representatives. Community Relations Coordinator Zaya Tsengel and City Legislator Liaison Tiffany Vao each gave a short presentation of their officer reports.
During the presentation, Crenshaw announced that they were able to collect 100 more surveys filled out this year. The problems that were addressed at the hearing were gender-neutral bathrooms and the sidewalks. “If there is a problem in your city, we want to be able to help you understand what needs to be done in order to contact your legislators,” Crenshaw said. He also addressed the issues regarding the OSLA publicity and explained the issue of trying get a hold of an available room. Due to the fact that there is no guarantee where the OLSA public hearing will be, it can be as difficult to get the word out about events that are hosted by OSLA.
Most of the public hearing is dedicated to public comment which is meant to help the OLSA understand the students’ input and opinions. Because the event was a public hearing, those who attended were given the opportunity to raise their hand, stand up and ask their question to the OLSA members present, whether they were legislative related or not. Due to the small attendance, there were not many questions asked. Of the few questions asked at the hearing, student Eric Warwic asked if there were any plans for work on the state level regarding gender-neutral issues to which Teague replied, “Yes, in partnership with the Student Association, we are planning to work more on it and bring further awareness to it.”
“We have these because we want to know what the students want, because what they want can change over the next month. We want to bring as much political awareness to the students at Bellevue College while making sure that our legislators know what we need,” Crenshaw said.
Crenshaw concluded the meeting by saying, “We believe in what the students want, and it’s important that we get their input on political matters, especially those involving Bellevue College.”