UCI offers 'Advanced' LGBT 'Safe Zone' trainings
University of California, Irvine students now have the option to take four different “Advanced” Safe Zone Training courses to supplement the basic safe zone training that UCI already offers.
The advanced courses delve into topics ranging from “Beyond the Umbrella: Trans Issues” to “Beyond the Binary: Bisexuality and Fluidity,” and there is even an offering titled “All the Colors of the Rainbow: Queer People of Color” that teaches students about “issues that people of color face within the LGBT community.”
“Programs like these are the result of universities funding departments which offer no utility to society.”
The programs promise to offer “a SAFE space for Anteaters of all sexual and gender identities,” and to “empower Allies and transform the campus climate to better support UCI’s LGBTQQIA+ population.”
The advanced trainings are specifically geared toward “current Safe Zone Allies who wish to get more involved in the LGBT community,” referring to heterosexual students who have adopted the LGBT cause as their own.
UCI also offers a guide for “Best Practices to Working with Trans* Students,” which not only warns professors and students alike against making assumptions about “a person’s gender identity,” but also goes into great detail about the do’s and don’ts of dealing with transgender students.
Faculty members, for instance, are warned against using gender pronouns that are inconsistent with a student’s preferred gender identity, and are instructed to “include trans issues or people in the curriculum or instruction,” with the added stipulation that such conversations should “challenge or address homophobic, anti-trans, or transphobic language or remarks.”
To facilitate compliance with the gender pronoun guidelines, UCI allows students to change their preferred gender identity with a simple one-page form, giving them the option of registering as “female, male, trans female/trans woman, trans male/trans man, genderqueer/gender non-conforming, [or] different identity.”
Armaan Saini, a conservative student at UC Irvine, told Campus Reform that “programs like these are the result of universities funding departments which offer no utility to society,” arguing that taxpayer and tuition dollars should instead be spent on traditional academic pursuits.
“Instead of arguing over what someone’s preferred pronoun is or where the nearest safe space is, we should really spend our tax dollars on important research or new business ideas,” he asserted, saying, “I can only hope we shift our concentration to more important matters.”
Campus Reform has reach out to UCI for comment, but had not received a response by press time.
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