SGB announces public support for Holocaust remembrance event

By Dale Shoemaker / Staff Writer

The Student Government Board introduced a resolution Tuesday night that will voice their public support for an interactive art display hosted by Pitt’s Hillel Jewish Student Union.

The display, which will be part of Hillel’s event, Kristallnacht: The Night of Broken Glass, will serve as a Holocaust remembrance for the Pittsburgh community on Nov. 4. It will feature shards of broken glass arranged to spell out a significant word, which Hillel hasn’t yet determined.

Kristallnacht, or the Night of Broken Glass, refers to Nov. 9, 1938, when Nazi soldiers destroyed the shops and homes of Jewish people in Germany and Austria, spreading broken glass throughout the streets. 

Board member Graeme Meyer said it is important that SGB supports this event and similar events with the public statement.

“Any student organization that’s going to put on an event that involves a large portion of the student population deserves our support,” Meyer said.

The resolution urged students to participate.

“The Board further encourages all students to take part in this creative expression of activism and remembrance,” the resolution stated.

Meyer said he and fellow Board member Benjamin West decided to write up an official resolution for the event after Elections Chair Lauren Barney, who co-sponsored the resolution, introduced it to them.

“The Holocaust was a terrible tragedy. It’s important to bring light to that, and SGB is the perfect public forum to do that,” Barney said.

The event is a collaboration between Hillel, SGB and the Cross Cultural Leadership Development Center.

Board member Benjamin West said SGB has passed resolutions that may have supported other religious student organizations in the past.

Meyer said SGB is open to publicly supporting other student organizations as well.

“If [other organizations] want us to voice our public support we can sit down and talk about that,” Meyer said.

The Board tabled the resolution for one week to allow for comments or concerns from the public, and will vote on whether or not to pass it at next Tuesday’s SGB meeting.

“It’s our duty to advocate for the students on campus,” Meyer said. “[Hillel] came to us, and we decided to support them.”

In other action:

The board approved Bill 023, which allows SGB to purchase distribution racks for student publications and place them in campus buildings. Applications to apply for rack space went live on SGB’s website Tuesday night, Board member Benjamin West said.

The Board introduced a resolution to amend the SGB Governing Code. The resolution will add an official procedure for SGB’s public meeting and create a uniform attendance policy, Board President Mike Nites said. Nites said the Board currently follows an unofficial set of rules, and amending the Governing Code would make it official. The resolution will be tabled for one week and the Board will vote on it at next Tuesday’s public meeting.