A Faculty Senate committee has called for the University to remove the Reserve Officers' Training Corps from campus in June 1993 if the two campus units do not comply with the University's code of non-discrimination. After a seven-month review of Navy and Army ROTC, the Faculty Senate's Committee on Conduct determined that the programs discriminate against homosexuals by not allowing them to fully participate in the programs. The committee also recommended that President Sheldon Hackney work to change the Defense Department's stance that homosexuality is incompatible with military service. University Council ordered the study last May as part of a resolution saying that ROTC should be kicked off campus by June 1993 unless they abide by "the spirit and the letter of the University's non-discrimination policy with respect to sexual and affectional preference." Council called for the study to find out if ROTC does violate this policy. The University's non-discriminatory code states that "the University does not discriminate on the basis of . . . sexual or affectional preference . . . in the administration of its educational policies, admissions policies, scholarship and loan programs, athletic and other University administered programs." The Council resolution also calls for the University to join a national effort "to pressure the Department of Defense to abolish its policy of discrimination against gay men and lesbian women." Council's resolution came as a reponse to allegations from a former University student enrolled in Naval ROTC who said he was harassed at the campus' unit when he revealed that he was gay. NROTC Director Lyle Lewis refused to comment on the Conduct Committee's report until he has read it himself, and Army ROTC Director Jerry Warnement could not be reached last night. Council Chairperson Almarin Phillips said last night the report also suggested allowing current ROTC students to receive University credit for military science courses taken as part of the program if it is moved to another school. He said this would prevent ROTC students from suffering for military policy they have no control over. The committee's report will be presented to Council members for their approval in May. Council is an advisory board to President Sheldon Hackney. Council votes are only recommendations to Hackney and carry no official weight. The president is the only person at the University who can authorize the removal of ROTC. Hackney said last night he will listen to advice from Council members at next month's meeting before he decides if he will follow the committee's suggestions. He would not give reasons for why he would allow ROTC to remain on campus despite the committee's findings. The president noted that while the ROTC units do not pay the University to be present on campus, they do provide financial aid for several students. Council Steering Committee member Peter Freyd, a Mathematics professor, said last night the results of the report clearly show that the ROTC units do not belong on campus under current military policy. "We can not run a University having a department that goes against its policy," Freyd said. Freyd said he hopes the actions of the University -- as well as other schools across the country -- will make the Defense Department change its discriminatory policy. "Everything [the military] is saying about homosexuals now, is the same thing [it] said about blacks in the 1950s," Freyd said. "If enough good schools say [ROTC] can't discriminate, it will have an effect that will change military policy." Phillips said he expects Council members to accept the conduct committee's report as readily as they accepted the resolution last May, but said he does not know how the president will respond.Comments powered by Disqus
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