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Univ. of Calif. president Napolitano forms advisory group on LGBT issues

Univ. of Calif. president Napolitano forms advisory group on LGBT issues

OAKLAND, Calif. — University of California President Janet Napolitano announced Tuesday the formation of a President’s Advisory Group on LGBT issues to advise her on how best to create a more welcoming and inclusive environment for LGBT students, faculty and staff across the UC system.

Janet Napolitano
Janet Napolitano

The advisory group was recommended by a systemwide task force that has been meeting for two years to study and evaluate LGBT climate and inclusion.

The task force made eight recommendations, ranging from collecting data to increasing cultural competency training, along with its call for a permanent, systemwide group to advise the president on LGBT issues and advance the well-being of LGBT students, faculty and staff.

“The task force recommendations are a concrete next step to advance UC’s efforts to create more welcoming and inclusive campus environments for members of the LGBT community,” said co-chair Barbara J. French, UC San Francisco vice chancellor of strategic communications and university relations.

The task force recommendations include:

  • Adjusting student record systems to enable students to self-identify with a preferred name.
  • Developing and implementing a systemwide gender-inclusive restroom policy.
  • Convening a subcommittee on bisexual community issues.
  • Establishing an LGBT resource center at UC Merced and having each campus dedicate funding for an LGBT cultural competency specialist who provides awareness training to students, faculty and staff.
  • Implementing a tax equalization program for employees in domestic partnerships who receive health benefits through UC’s health and wellness plans.

Napolitano, the former Secretary for the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, said she would review the recommendations and respond at a future date.

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