In case you missed it: This week in news
It’s been a long week of midterms, Halloween is around the corner, and we might experiencing a pretty sandy snowstorm on Monday (see what I did there?). But before you head out tonight dressed as Big Bird or a binder full of women, in case you missed it, here’s a quick breakdown of this week’s top stories.
We saw several of successful appeals to the administration this week. On Sunday, the Student Governing Board executive board voted not to comply with Barnard’s restrictive fliering policy; on Monday, the Activities Board at Columbia followed suit; and on Wednesday, the Barnard administration rolled back the stringent stamping requirement. And Columbia Health Services, hearing students’ concerns, announced the creation of a discretionary fund that can be applied to emergency health procedures like abortions when students choose not to avail themselves of their own health insurance.
Labor issues were in the news this week, with the clerical workers’ union at Barnard approving a new labor contract that the union president called a negotiations “victory” with administrators. All is not well on the labor front though, with students in the Justice Will Be Served! club soliciting local business owners to sign a pledge guaranteeing fair conditions for employees. At Indus Valley, an Indian restaurant on Broadway at 100th Street, former workers are suing their old bosses, alleging that they abused the workers, paid them far less than the minimum wage, and stole their tips.
Labor issues often involved money issues, which were (independently) the focus of a handful of stories this week. The Alumni Association made a contest out of donating to various Columbia schools in an aggressive push to raise a record amount of funds in a single 24-hour period. They raised more than $6.8 million. (Does this mean I can get air conditioning in Watt?) Meanwhile, the West Harlem Local Development Corporation—charged with distributing $76 million from Columbia to West Harlem residents—promised locals that, despite a rocky last year, the organization has landed on its feet. And for the Boys Choir of Harlem, shut down in 2007 after financial ruin and a sex abuse scandal, the half-decade hiatus has given the group time to reflect and reorganize, and it’s been holding auditions for the last two weeks.
Here’s some must-reads: You’ve probably seen the news that Jacques Barzun, whose influence on the Core Curriculum cannot be understated, died Thursday night. Be sure to read his review of the 1927 Varsity Show when he was Spectator’s drama critic. The first ROTC students are now on campus, commuting several times a week to take classes as SUNY Maritime in the Bronx, and even though it’s been 43 years since the program existed at Columbia, the students report feeling at home already. And on a student life note, Queer Awareness Month is coming to a close, but did you know that this year the organizers broadened their gender and sexuality events to consider marginalization at the border, embracing the fact that October is also Latino Heritage Month?
And a duet of fun (quirky? you decide) police stories to close out: Hundreds of longboarders illegally skated down Broadway to Lower Manhattan on Saturday, defying a court order and a handful of police cars who threatened to arrest them. This last story, meanwhile, gave us an excuse to run the phrase “cannibal cop” in print… because an officer of the local 26th Precinct was arrested for conspiring to kindap, cook, and eat 100 women. NBD.
That’s all for today. Tweet Spec stories you missed @ColumbiaSpec with the hashtag #icymi.
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