Volume 93, Issue 69

Wednesday, February 2, 2000


NEWS

Candidates return to past at Saugeen forum

Commercials warrant channel surfing

Bill proposes ban on sex and alcohol in dorms

Penalties laid on four candidates

Kapoor bleeds purple with passion

USC needs a watchdog

Briefs

Bass Ackwards

Bill proposes ban on sex and alcohol in dorms



By Lisa Whitaker
Gazette Staff

Rock 'n' roll might be the only thing allowed in Arizona university dorm rooms, if a proposed ban on sex and alcohol becomes law.

The bill, which would go into effect in June 2001, was proposed by Arizona Republican Senator Jean McGrath, who said the issue was raised as a result of parental and student concerns. If passed, the new law would affect the University of Arizona, Arizona State University and Northern Arizona University.

The bill proposes a ban on alcohol and pets in dormitories, the segregation of students by same sex floors and time restraints on opposite sex visits – making visits between midnight and 6 a.m. illegal. "The major complaints are about sex," McGrath said.

She also said because there has been consumption of alcohol within university dorm rooms, students are already breaking the law. "There is no alcohol permitted in state-owned facilities," she said, explaining the Arizona State Statute. She added the proposed bill excludes the marriage residences.

McGrath said she could defend the sex-ban law in university dormitories, as there is already a state law banning fornication outside of marriage.

When asked how she planned to monitor these actions, McGrath said students would monitor each other and report any mishaps to residence advisors.

The University of Arizona Students' Association is officially opposed to the bill, said Derik Kurdy, director of student lobbying groups for the ASA. Kurdy said the bill violates the constitutional rights of students.

"I feel the bills themselves are limiting the students' rights under the United States First Amendment and it returns the university to in loco parentis," Kurdy said. He explained in loco parentis gives universities the right to act as the guardian of each individual student regardless of age, while the student was under the university's care. Universities across the U.S. dissolved this law in the 1960s.

Kurdy added the bill was introduced on Jan. 19 and went to the house floor on Jan. 27. He said he felt it was possible to override the bill through strong student support, which has already been illustrated through emails, letters and phone calls.

However, McGrath said student protests could not possibly override the bill. "Students don't vote," she said, adding her office has not received many phone calls against the bill since its proposal.

University of Arizona associate-VP for State Relations Jeff Fahey spoke against the bill. "Our position is that we don't need this bill." He added this bill, if passed, would micro-manage students.

Western's University Students' Council president SzeJack Tan, said a similar ban would not be possible at Western, but banning alcohol could be a relevant issue with the underage students expected with the double-cohort.

"I really have a big problem with [the bill]," he said, adding students did not need someone looking over their shoulders.


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Copyright The Gazette 2000