Overall Rating Gold
Overall Score 75.64
Liaison Yolanda Cieters
Submission Date March 2, 2018
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

Seattle University
EN-14: Participation in Public Policy

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 2.00 / 2.00 Phillip Thompson
Director
CEJS
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Does the institution advocate for public policies that support campus sustainability or that otherwise advance sustainability at the municipal/local level?:
Yes

A brief description of how the institution engages in public policy advocacy for sustainability at the municipal/local level, including the issues, legislation, and ordinances for or against which the institution has advocated:

(1) Seattle University was the first educational institution in the state of Washington to sign the Washington Business Climate Declaration: http://www.seattleu.edu/commons/article.aspx?id=148570

(2) Seattle University is a signatory to the City of Seattle’s Climate Partnership (2006): The partnership is a voluntary pact among Seattle-area employers to
reduce their greenhouse gas emissions. Together, these employers helped the City meet
its community-wide goal three years ahead of schedule.
http://www.seattle.gov/archive/climate/

(3) In February 2007, President Stephen Sundborg, S.J., signed the American College & University Presidents’ Climate Commitment. This commitment is a pledge to advance sustainability and address climate change through education, research, non-classroom programs, reducing greenhouse gas emissions, and sharing knowledge. The pledge is enacted through SU's Climate Action Plan. https://www.seattleu.edu/media/cejs/files/content/Seattle-University's-Climate-Action-Plan-2010-2035-v1.2.pdf

(4) Following President Trump’s decision to withdraw from the Paris Climate Accord, President Sundborg joined other university, business and elected leaders in reaffirming a commitment to our climate goals. The President also expressed his personal support for divestment from fossil fuels and continuing to explore how SU can do so responsibly. https://www.seattleu.edu/president/update/climate-change-and-divestment.html

(5) SU has a representative on the Steering Committee of the Capitol Hill EcoDistrict: The EcoDistrict works to create a sustainable and equitable Capitol Hill (neighborhood where Seattle University is located) through Strategic Partnerships, Community Engagement, Grassroots Empowerment/Capacity Building, and Policy & Advocacy. Projects the EcoDistrict is currently working on are (among others): (1) a Renter Initiative (aimed at organizing renters to advance a climate-friendly policy agenda of affordability and mobility); (2) Help developers incorporate EcoDistrict values into the design of planned projects; (3) Transit Pass Program (provide low-cost transit passes to affordable housing residents); (4) community support/consult with local businesses for a Protected bike lane BL in the Pike-Pine Corridor. https://capitolhillecodistrict.org/

(6) SU is a partner of Sustainable Seattle working to build a thriving future through initiatives that deliver environmental, economic and community benefits, promote equity, and build resilience. Seattle University hosted Sustainable Seattle's Pacific Northwest Climate Resilience Summit in January 2018, convening local Business, Government, and Non-Profit/Community-Based Organizations to focus on issues of equity and how we can best support communities on the front lines of climate disruption. http://www.sustainableseattle.org/

(7) SU's President joined with other university leaders in signing statements in support of maintaining the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) Executive Order. Additionally, the university expressed its support for the BRIDGE Act to our representatives in Congress (January 2017). The university also strongly opposed the discriminatory and misguided executive order issued by the Trump administration (in January 2017) on non-U.S. citizens from select countries (Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen): https://www.seattleu.edu/president/update/statement-by-the-president-on-immigration-executive-order.html

In September 2017, following President Trump’s decision to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program (DACA), the Independent Colleges of Washington (of which Seattle University is a member) along with all Washington institutions of higher learning issued a strong statement in support of DACA. Additionally, President Sundborg joined more than 1,300 Catholic educators in signing a letter from the Ignatian Solidarity Network and Jesuits in support of DACA. SU also signed onto a letter to President Trump from the American Council on Education through the Association of Jesuit Colleges and Universities and Association of Catholic Colleges and Schools. Seattle U will continue to advocate on behalf of our students and alumni who are affected by the DACA decision.
https://www.seattleu.edu/president/update/deferred-action-for-childhood-arrivals-program.html

(8) In the wake of the tax reform legislation debates (November 2017), SU has been working with higher education associations like the American Council on Education (ACE), the Association of Jesuit Colleges and Universities and the Independent Colleges of Washington to oppose provisions that would make it harder for undergraduate and graduate students and families to afford higher education: https://www.seattleu.edu/president/update/tax-reform-legislation.html

(9) The Project on Family Homelessness uses journalism, art and storytelling projects to help engage the community to make family homelessness rare, brief and one time only in Washington state. The oldest continuous homelessness advocacy project at Seattle University, it was established in 2009 through a grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. The project was recently awarded a seventh grant from the Gates Foundation to continue its communications and advocacy work through 2018: https://www.seattleu.edu/artsci/departments/ips/community-projects/project-on-family-homelessness/

(10) The Homeless Rights Advocacy Project (HRAP) engages Seattle University School of Law students in effective legal and policy research, analysis, and advocacy work to advance the rights of homeless adults, youth, and children.
http://www.law.seattleu.edu/centers-and-institutes/korematsu-center/homeless-rights-advocacy-project/current-activities-and-outcomes


Does the institution advocate for public policies that support campus sustainability or that otherwise advance sustainability at the state/provincial/regional level?:
Yes

A brief description of how the institution engages in public policy advocacy for sustainability at the state/provincial/regional level, including the issues, legislation, and ordinances for or against which the institution has advocated:

The Chemical Hygiene and Biosafety Officer periodically reviews guidance developed by King County for the academic laboratory environment.


Does the institution advocate for public policies that support campus sustainability or that otherwise advance sustainability at the national level?:
Yes

A brief description of how the institution engages in public policy advocacy for sustainability at the national level, including the issues, legislation, and ordinances for or against which the institution has advocated:

Seattle University is one of more than 300 colleges and universities from across the United States to sign the "We Are Still In" declaration, demonstrating its enduring commitment for climate action and reducing carbon emissions.
https://www.wearestillin.com/


Does the institution advocate for public policies that support campus sustainability or that otherwise advance sustainability at the international level?:
No

A brief description of how the institution engages in public policy advocacy for sustainability at the international level, including the issues, legislation, and ordinances for or against which the institution has advocated:
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A brief description of other political positions the institution has taken during the previous three years (if applicable):
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A brief description of political donations the institution made during the previous three years (if applicable):

N/A


The website URL where information about the programs or initiatives is available:
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Additional documentation to support the submission:
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