Week ten: State incentives for vaccination, protest against CPO administration
(Left to right: Daily Bruin file photo, Antonio Martinez/Daily Bruin, Daily Bruin file photo)
By Hanna Skikne
June 4, 2021 8:29 p.m.
This Week in the News serves as The Quad’s space for reflection on current events at and around UCLA. Every week, Daily Bruin staffers will analyze some of the most significant stories to keep readers up to speed.
Classes may be finished this week, but that doesn’t mean Westwood has quieted down just yet. Amid protests and petitions, Bruins have not failed to take action even during Week 10.
A survey held by UCLA researchers with the COVID-19 Health and Politics Project in March and April found that monetary incentives could increase people’s willingness to get vaccinated.
Similarly, as part of a $116.5 million program called “Vax for the Win,” the state of California will start rewarding $50 incentive cards to those who get their vaccine, according to Gov. Gavin Newsom. The state will also be awarding 40 cash prizes to Californians who are at least partially vaccinated.
With around 12 million eligible Californians still unvaccinated, officials are evaluating alternative incentives, such as the freedom of no longer having to wear a mask in public and educational campaigns clearing up misconceptions regarding the vaccine.
The Mother Organizations coalition, a group advocating for underrepresented Bruins, conducted an in-person protest against the actions of the administration of the Community Programs Office on Monday.
Students expressed concerns over the CPO’s hiring process that is funded by students, as well as a lack of financial transparency, given student leaders have not been given an itemized budget to review by the CPO which spends over $1.2 million dollars annually.
Further, according to third-year education and social transformation student Maxine Dimalanta, a lack of autonomy has been increasingly present for student-run programs.
Students also expressed that with unpaid hours and alleged mistreatment from CPO administrators, it has become a hostile work environment. To amend these purported faults, students are looking for rectification, such as the removal of current CPO advisors and the implementation of a student-majority board of directors.
After cutting the University of California’s budget in 2020 due to the pandemic, Newsom has now presented the largest state investment in UC history. The investment of over $807 million includes support to organizations such as the UCLA Labor Center and further medical education funding.
The UC Office of the President released a statement of gratitude May 14, as money allocated by the state often determines the capabilities of the University. However, it is hard to tell how far these investment promises extend into the future
Gary Orfield, professor of education, law, political science and urban planning said the funds rationed for the UCLA Labor Center and UCLA Asian American Studies Program shows the devotion to combat a rise in Asian hate.
Despite the fact that the constitution grants the UC Board of Regents jurisdiction over the budget’s details, there remain some disagreements between the university and the government’s hopes for the money. For example, while the state senate has proposed cutting out-of-state admissions, the UCs prefer it is maintained in order to keep higher tuitions.
The Henry Samueli School of Engineering and Applied Sciences will hold a virtual graduation despite student petitions for an in-person ceremony and appeals to administration for modified in-person graduations.
Fourth-year bioengineering student Amanda Chan and fourth-year aerospace engineering student Anneliese Peterson were among those who helped to organize the petition.
With hundreds of signatures and nearby schools such as the University of Southern California holding in-person ceremonies, Christine Lee, Samueli School of Engineering’s Executive Director of Communications, shared that two guests will now be welcome to the in-person procession and recognition events dedicated to engineering graduates.
Nonetheless, according to the Commencement 2021 website, there will be future in-person commencements for the Classes of 2020 and 2021.