A change in the anti-discrimination policy

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April 1, 2013


HandsNearly a year after the on-campus harassment of a gay student in March 2012, UVU has amended its anti-discrimination policy to list sexual orientation as a protected status.

The change, which took place Jan. 2013, was an effort championed by Tom Hawkins, UVU family studies major and co-chair of UVU Spectrum, also known as the Gay/Straight Alliance.

The effort put forth by the administration to change Policy 165 was spurred in 2012 when Hawkins, who at the time was running for vice president of clubs, received numerous hateful emails regarding his sexual orientation.

One anonymous student sent an email saying, “Because of Tom Hawkins’ sexuality his judgment is impaired, and biased.”

After reading the hate mail, Hawkins said, “My initial reaction was to quit the race… However, I quickly decided to…turn a negative situation into a positive one.”

Students, faculty, staff and the administration rallied behind Hawkins in the cause of equality.