Are These The Leaders You Want? Hold SU Officials Accountable!

Are These The Leaders You Want? Hold SU Officials Accountable!

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Tishiya Carey started this petition to Student Union and

On November 19, Student Union Senate and Treasury passed articles of impeachment against Randal Walker, the Election Commissioner who has since resigned, due to technicalities in the fall election ballot. One of the technicalities included students being able to vote for more than 11 candidates for Senate and Treasury. Before reaching this point, the Student Union Executive Board had voted not to recall Walker for various reasons, including the fact that only one student voted for more than 11 candidates. Therefore, we believe that subjecting her to another trial after she had been exonerated from the first one constitutes double jeopardy. 


Although we understand that mistakes were made with the election ballot, this entire process was unfair and mishandled. This is but the latest episode of students of color being treated unfairly by Student Union. Randal Walker’s marginalized identities may have played a role in the discriminatory attacks against her, including being referred to as “grossly incompetent” despite doing everything she could to minimize the impact of her mistakes. These kinds of attacks seem to be only reserved for minorities and underrepresented students. 


We, the undersigned students of Washington University in St. Louis, request the immediate resignation of the following elected officials due to their role in the mishandling of the impeachment of Randal Walker, as well as the harm done to the Black campus community:

1. Charlotte Pohl (Vice President of Programming): submitted the original recall against Ms. Walker less than 24 hours after the election in which the problems were being resolved. Pohl’s petition claimed that she could not vote but she ultimately cast a ballot manually. It is worth noting that Pohl ran against Walker in the spring 2019 election. 


2. Fadel Alkilani (Treasury Representative): introduced the articles of impeachment in which he called Ms. Walker “grossly incompetent.” Also has a history of racially-insensitive comments such as referring to Majora Carter, Stacey Abrams, and Yvonne Orji as “low budget Blacks” in the Trending Topics session in spring 2019. 


3. Jake Sassmannshausen (Treasury Representative): helped lead the passage of the impeachment articles with unconfirmed claims and yelled at Destiny Jackson, a Black woman who serves as a member of the Election Commission, during the proceedings. 


4. Alexa Jochims (Speaker of the Treasury): failed to inform Ms. Walker that impeachment articles would be introduced against her at the legislative session, even though Jochims had prior knowledge. Also released a misleading opinion editorial to the student body.


5. Steven Kish (Speaker of the Senate): failed to inform Ms. Walker that impeachment articles would be introduced against her at the legislative session, even though Kish had prior knowledge. Also released a misleading opinion editorial to the student body. 


Because of their actions, we, the signees, have lost faith in the aforementioned elected officials’ ability to lead and serve in our student government. Student Union has always been an anti-Black space, but these officials are making the student body further lose trust in the organization entrusted with $3.7 million of our student activities fees. These elected officials have engaged in anti-Black activity and have publicly tarnished Student Union’s name. For these reasons, we request their immediate resignation. 

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