Tag Archives: BRT



Senate Meeting Agenda – Oct 5, 2016

Location: Gerlinger Lounge; 3:00-5:00 pm

3:00 pm    1.   Call to Order

          1.1      Introductory Remarks, Senate President Bill Harbaugh

3:05 pm    2.   Approval of Minutes

 2.1      May 25, 2016

3:05 pm    3.   State of the University

3.1      Welcome, President Michael Schill

3.2      Introductory Remarks, Senate VP Chris Sinclair

3:55 pm    4.   New Business

4.1      Discussion of Senate procedures and Handbook, Substitute Senator policy, new Executive Coordinator for the Statutory Faculty (Angela Wilhelms);  Bill Harbaugh, Senate President

4.2      Introduce Bylaws change: CoC membership; Chris Sinclair, Senate VP

4.3      Introduce motion to allow for the reordering of the Senate Agenda; Chris Sinclair, Senate VP

4:20 pm    5.   Open Discussion

4:20 pm    6.   Reports

6.1      Update from the Task Force on the Bias Response Team; Chris Chavez (Journalism), Co-Chair

6.2      Update from Responsible Reporting Work Group and recap of Student Forum (Sept. 30, 2016); Merle Weiner (Law), Chair

4:45 pm    7.   Notice(s) of Motion

7.1      New Program Proposal: Spatial Data Science & Technology (Department of Geography); Undergrad Council

7.2      IAC/IAPAC & transition; Andy Karduna (Human Physiology) & Intercollegiate Athletics Committee

7.3      Introduce motion to allow for the reordering of the Senate Agenda; Chris Sinclair, Senate VP

7.4      Notice of motion on Bylaws change: CoC membership; Chris Sinclair, Senate VP

7.5.      New motions?

4:50 pm    8.   Other Business

8.1      Recruitment of a new COIA representative; Bill Harbaugh, Senate President

5:00 pm    9.   Adjournment

The Senate Task Force on the Bias Response Team

The Senate has formed the Task Force on the Bias Response Team.  There are available seats for representatives chosen by ASUO and the GTFF.

Read co–chair Chris Chavez’s letter:
Dear Senators-

I want to give you an update on the BRT task force. The charge of the Senate’s Task Force on the Bias Response Team is this:

National coverage of UO’s Bias Response Team (BRT) and similar efforts aimed at reducing campus bias have raised some concerns regarding the potential for negative effects on free and open classroom discussions. This task force is to assess the material and perceived impact of the BRT on faculty, student, and staff interactions, with a focus on the impact of the BRT on academic matters. The task force will first gather information about the BRT’s operations, including record-keeping. Then, based on the findings of this research and input from the Senate and the University community, the task force will work with the UO administration to ensure that the BRT functions so as to encourage both academic freedom and inclusivity.

The Task Force is chaired by Chris Chavez (Journalism) and Chris Sinclair (Math and Senate VP). The membership includes Rich Margerum (PPPM), Ofer Raban (Law) and Theodora Thompson (Classified staff in Admissions, and SEIU local President). There will be a few other members, including a student, who have yet to be appointed. The committee is advisory to the Senate, and will follow the Senate’s open meetings rules.

At the J-School town hall earlier this month VP Robin Holmes announced that she was reviewing the BRT and expected to make some changes. However I think it’s important that the Senate take the lead on this, and that we should do so with full knowledge of what the BRT does.
It’s to the credit of BRT coordinator Maure Smith-Benanti that her 2014-15 report on how the BRT tries to reduce biased behavior and language is one of the more transparent documents I’ve seen come out of the UO administration, and I’m optimistic that the BRT and VP Holmes’s office will share more with us. (See the BRT website and report at https://uodos.uoregon.edu/Programs/Bias-Response-Team/Annual-Reports.)
I expect that the task force will be able to collect some information over the summer and update the Senate on that information by early fall. If you have any information on the BRT I encourage you to email Chris Chavez and Chris Sinclair, at csinclai@uoregon.edu and cchavez4@uoregon.edu.

Ombud search & Bias Response Team task force

This is a quote from an email sent to 16-17 Senators from Senate President Harbaugh. -Ch

“The Senate is setting up a task force to study the administration’s Bias Response Team, which has recently been in the news. The charge is to collect information on what the BRT does, analyze the effect of the BRT on academic freedom and on campus climate, and make recommendations as to whether or not Senate action is needed.

Senator Chris Chavez (Journalism) has agreed to lead this task force. Chris led the J-School’s panel on the BRT on Monday, and I think did a great job ensuring that all perspectives were heard.

If you are interested in serving on this task force, or know of a constituent who might be, please email myself, Chris Chavez, and or CoC Chair Chris Sinclair. Keep in mind that the task force will do the bulk of its information gathering this summer, and then reach out to the broader campus in the fall for input.”