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UCLA USA Elections Board postpones USAC voting period

Kerckhoff Hall, where offices for the Undergraduate Students Association Council are located, is pictured. Elections for the council have been postponed for one week by the USA Elections Board. (Mia Tavares/Daily Bruin senior staff)

By Gabrielle Gillette

May 5, 2024 5:21 p.m.

This post was updated May 7 at 11:24 p.m.

Voting for the Undergraduate Students Association Council election has been postponed to Friday after the attack on and police sweep of the Palestine solidarity encampment.

In a written statement, the 2024 UCLA USA Elections Board said the voting period, originally scheduled for May 3 to May 10, has been changed to open May 10 at 2 p.m. and close May 17 at 2 p.m. The pre-election debates for the 40 candidates – which are co-hosted with the Daily Bruin – will now be hosted Wednesday and Thursday from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m.

After the attacks by counter-protesters on the Palestine solidarity encampment that injured dozens and the arrests of more than 200 people in the following day’s police sweep, the Elections Board wrote that it believes the current campus atmosphere is not conducive to holding a fair and safe USAC election. Some candidates, including current USAC members, participated in the encampment and counter-protests against it.

The board wrote that while it understands the postponement may disappoint some students and organizations, upholding the safety and welfare of the entire community is its top priority.

In its statement, the board called on UCLA leadership to prioritize reviewing security, facilitate dialogue between different perspectives and provide support resources. It also called on students to work with each other, administrators and student leaders to rebuild understanding.

“This election process is rendered meaningless if the very students we claim to represent are subjected to an environment that leaves them feeling threatened, intimidated or unable to make their voices heard,” the board wrote in its statement.

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