SA to review student orgs after discrimination fears


Student Association Senator Robert Kreml talks about the addition of an ad hoc committee, of which he is chairman, on April 11 at SA Senate in the Holmes Student Center, Sky Room.

By Jackie Nevarez

The Student Association Senate approved a motion to review the constitutions of two prospective student organizations after a senator saw possible gender discrimination Sunday.

Senator Timothy Brandner said he had an issue with Young Beautiful Ladies and NIU Women’s Club Basketball because the SA Senate has failed to recognize organizations in the past that discriminate on the basis of gender.

“I’m confident that Title IX of the Higher Education Act prevents discrimination based on gender of the organizations,” Brandner said. “If they’d like to exist, I’m pretty sure they have to [put] themselves through an external body other than the Student Association, but I’m not 100 percent on those issues.”

Gender issues in student organizations

Brianna Waller, a representative from Young Beautiful Ladies, said the group is meant for dancers, primarily majorettes. The group performed at Phlip Da Script, a dance competition held Friday in the Holmes Student Center, Carl Sandburg Auditorium. Waller said the group had 10 members, but 25 girls asked to try out at Friday’s competition.

Brandner asked if male students were allowed to join Young Beautiful Ladies, to which Waller said no; however, Waller said transgender women would be allowed in the group.

Jenah Anderson, NIU Women’s Club Basketball representative, said the club has 10 to 12 members and an approved practice time at the Recreation Center. Anderson said the difference between the club and intramural basketball organizations is that clubs get to compete outside of NIU and with other universities. Brandner asked if transgender women would be allowed to join the club, to which Anderson answered yes.

Senator Robert Kreml motioned the dance group Young Beautiful Ladies and NIU Women’s Club Basketball’s constitutions be reviewed by the executive branch, and the Senate approved his motion.

KingsWord NIU

KingsWord NIU President Christianah Olojede said the group, which was described as a ministry of God, welcomed everyone regardless of skin color or religion. The group is a part of the national KingsWord Ministries International, whose website states its mission is “to raise a supernatural army.”

Brandner asked Olojede if non-Christian people and atheists would be allowed to be in the group, and Olojede said there would be conversations with people before they joined. The organization was approved by the Senate.

Other organizations

Representatives from Spikeball and Northern Illinois Parkour and Freerunning were not present at Sunday’s meeting. The constitutions for the groups were also sent back to the executive branch to review after Brandner said there were many grammatical errors in the documents.