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Group discusses bike shop, discrimination

Marisa Iati | Thursday, March 22, 2012

Student Senate discussed both the potential reopening of the Notre Dame Bike Shop and the March 5 town hall meeting that addressed discrimination at its Wednesday meeting.

John Sanders, residence life director for student government, said Notre Dame Security Police (NDSP) provided free bicycle repair services at the shop for at least 10 years. He said five to seven mechanics fixed approximately 331 bikes each year.

“They didn’t advertise because they were a little bit afraid that if they advertised, they wouldn’t be able to meet the demand,” he said. “The biggest problem that we’re facing is primarily space.”

Another obstacle to reopening the shop is lack of funding, Sanders said.

“While NDSP is willing to continue salvaging bikes for parts and reusing them and collecting bikes for people, they aren’t willing to fund the operation in the way that they were,” he said. “So in order to do that, we’re probably going to have to come up with some sort of collaborative fund with other departments on campus in order to resurrect the bike shop.”

Sanders said the bike shop could potentially reopen in a currently flooded restroom in Stepan Center. Student body vice president and president-elect Brett Rocheleau said the shop previously existed in the garages of the Telecommunications Building.

Student body president Pat McCormick said student government plans to introduce a concurrent resolution between Campus Life Council and Senate to express support for reopening the bike shop.

Senate also discussed reactions to the March 5 town hall meeting that addressed recent acts of discriminatory harassment.

Freshman class president Tim Scanlan said some students he spoke with were shocked that many of the stories of discrimination shared at the town hall meeting involved rectors and NDSP officers. In one case, a student complained of a discriminatory comment from an officer.

Another student said her rector failed to discipline a roommate for prejudiced behavior.

“They said one of the most surprising things was how many of the stories involved authority,” Scanlan said.