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Senate hears presentation from Campus Dining, discusses porn filter

| Tuesday, December 4, 2018

In their last meeting of the fall semester, Notre Dame’s student senate heard a presentation from Campus Dining about new on-campus retail locations and discussed recent Observer articles regarding the porn filter.

Senior director of Campus Dining Chris Abayasinghe and director of retail dining Luigi Alberganti led the presentation, where they announced the addition of two new retail dining locations on campus: Garbanzo Mediterranean Fresh in Hesburgh Center, and Pizza Pi — in place of Reckers — in South Dining Hall. Alberganti emphasized the influence of student well-being in their decisions.

“My mission is to make sure that we bring the concepts that we think will have an impact on campus life,” Alberganti said.

Alberganti said Garbanzo would replace the Au Bon Pain Catering currently located in Hesburgh Center. Garbanzo, a Mediterranean-influenced restaurant, will offer fresh foods for vegans, vegetarians and omnivores alike.

“This can be a snack or it can be a full meal,” Alberganti said.

Alberganti said Garbanzo Mediterranean Fresh is expected to open in February of 2019.

He also discussed the opening of a new eatery to replace Reckers behind South Dining Hall.

“We heard from students that the late-night places were something that we needed to improve on,” Alberganti said.

Pizza Pi will offer a variety of menu items, including pizzas, baked pasta, salad, smoothies and desserts. In addition, the restaurant will have a bar serving local beer and wine options for students who are 21 and older.

“Our intention is to provide a very responsible approach to serving wine and beer on this campus,” Alberganti said.

However, Alberganti said though students will be able to use flex points to purchase food at Pizza Pi, they cannot use them to buy beer and wine.

The timeline for the project is to have the establishment finished by May 2019, with periodic updates provided by student government and Campus Dining until the restaurant’s completion.

After Campus Dining’s presentation, members of the senate engaged in a discussion about the porn filter controversy on Notre Dame’s campus, mainly in regards to the Letter to the Editor published in The Observer — “The men of Notre Dame request a porn filter” — in which members of the Notre Dame community advocated for blocking access to pornography websites. The original letter has led to various responses, both in agreement and opposition to the filter.

Junior and Sorin College senator Mark Spretnjak brought up the issue, saying it was an issue being discussed throughout campus but had yet to be debated by the senate.

“This is something that a lot of people around campus have been talking about and it hasn’t been brought up here, and a lot of people have asked me to bring it up at Senate just so we can talk about it,” he said.

Senior and diversity council president Alyssa Ngo said the movement has been spearheaded by the group Students for Child-Oriented Policy, or SCOP.

“The specifics of their proposal are they had the top 25 porn websites, whatever they are measured to be, and that’s what they want to ban,” Ngo said. “So your question, how do we ban porn, that’s how.”

Senior and student body vice president Corey Gayheart said the Senate can and may look into the issue, but this is a common debate at Notre Dame.

“It tends to happen each year at some point,” he said.  

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About Claire Rafford

Claire Rafford is an English major and a Journalism, Ethics and Democracy minor from the class of 2021. She is originally from Tempe, Arizona. Her skills include excessive Harry Potter trivia knowledge. That is it.

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