Commission Will Investigate Feminists' Charges at U. Mass
A group of feminists occupying the offices of The Daily Collegian newspaper at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst submitted a new set of demands to the editors which calls for the formation of a fact-finding commission to investigate charges of sexism leveled at the paper, a spokesman for the women said yesterday.
Earlier Demands Dropped
The women, who have occupied the buildings since April 30, have dropped their earlier demands in favor of a commission made up of two representatives from the women's community, two Collegian staff members, three faculty members, the University's ombudsman, and a member of Chancellor Randolph Bronery's staff who would not have a vote, the spokesman said. The Collegian staff would have to abide by the decision of the commission, the spokesman added.
"The only publicity we're getting was Collegian publicity and that was a little tricky," the spokesman said. The women are now working on efforts to inform the student body about their demands, and they held a rally two days ago.
Both the women and the paper's staft must submit a list of eight to ten faculty members to the chancellor today. From these he will appoint the three faculty members to serve on the commission.
The women will leave the Collegiate building as soon as the commission is formed and the Collegian agrees to act by its decision, the spokesman said. The new plan differs from the group's former demands in that "We're not asking The Collegian to admit their wrongs, we're letting the commission do that," the spokesman added.
The commission will rely on the testimony of Collegian staff members, women of the UMass community, and back issues of The Collegian to investigate the charges and make recommendations to the chancellor by September 1.
Sexist practices the women cited include not printing stories concerning women's issues such as rape, the women editors' lack of control over women's news, and sexist advertisements.