Message from SUA President Ayo Banjo

To: UC Santa Cruz Community

From:  Student Union Assembly, via the Dean of Students Office

Congratulations on finishing strong Slugs!
On behalf of the Student Union Assembly, we would like to say thank you for allowing us to serve our community, expanding the resources we provide, and support various initiatives and programs of our student body. This time last year, the student body elected us to serve your needs. I campaigned on changes in the SUA. Below are the highlights of this year’s initiatives:
  1. Secured about half a million dollars to fight for housing justice in Santa Cruz. This includes providing aid to students facing eviction, as well as providing free legal services by hiring a full time lawyer that works for the student body.
  2. Reformed UC policy on police, ensuring body cameras and student accountability over implementation of reforms.
  3. Partnered with engineering student leaders to reform the engineering department, addressing the sexual violence and inappropriate behavior, ongoing. Sign our petition here. 
  4. Identified necessary changes to UC policy on selecting Chancellors, to become more transparent to students, and ensured UCSC Chancellor search committee accountability.
  5. Fought for the unionization of workers on Student Housing West plan, while advocating for subsidized rooms for low-income students in new housing structures, and ensuring child care facilities are kept affordable for student parents, ongoing.
  6. Reached an agreement with UCOP to meet with Black student leaders across the UC system, regularly.
  7. Represented UC environmental justice values at the United Nations, encouraging global policy makers to carry out sustainable goals by 2030. 
  8. Advocated for AFSCME contract on UC Council of Student Body Presidents, ongoing.
  9. Collaborated with the Snail Movement to pass a faculty resolution supporting safe on-campus overnight parking for our houseless students.
  10. SUA Reforms: Implemented Conflict Resolution protocol, passed the SUA constitutional amendments (thanks to Rep. Stephan Edgars), restructured SUA’s priorities by moving funding solely into SOFA to focus on organizing in SUA meetings, increased funding for student organizations by about $30,000, increased SUA’s social media presence by 200%, initiated Committee on Student Worker Protections, now established as the Labor Commission (thanks to the Worker Student Solidarity Coalition), and gave SUA voting seats to International Student Union (thanks to our SUA Treasurer Raphael) as well as the Society of Women Engineers, Fiat Justice, MSA, and the Snail Movement.
Although much has been done this year, there is so much more work to be done. AFSCME workers still don’t have a fair contract, and students are still at risk of the various issues pertaining to our campus community. But as we close this academic school year, we must continue to remember that, in the fight against our barriers to success, we must come together to support the collective efforts of liberation. This means turning out for protests, or sharing information with your friends to build awareness of the issues at hand. When we come together, nothing break our organizing apart. Our collective struggles can be met with optimism and support for a better tomorrow. 
Thank you for helping us build a better tomorrow.