Campus News

UW Center for Religion and Global Citizenry voices disapproval of new dining plan

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UW-Madison’s Center for Religion and Global Citizenry voiced their disapproval of the university’s new dining policy Tuesday, becoming the latest organization on campus to denounce the plan.

In a statement, the center said the policy— which will require incoming students living in residence halls to spend a minimum of $1400 per year in food — is discriminatory against students with religious dietary restrictions. According to the group, the changes undermine University Housing’s dedication to diversity and inclusion on campus.

According to CRGR’s statement, the food options at the university’s dining halls are “extremely limited” for Muslim and Jewish students who follow halal and kosher dietary laws. Because of this lack of options, students with religious dietary restrictions will be forced to “spend money on a dining plan that does not service them,” the center said.

Although a local Madison restaurant currently “provides a prepackaged, kosher soup and salad option” to two of UW-Madison dining halls, the Center said this effort is not enough.

“Asking students to spend upwards of $1,400 on the same two soups and salads without providing alternatives is a direct contradiction of the University Housing diversity statement,” the group said in the statement.

Additionally, the center said the university’s policy will not only impact students who are religiously observant, but also “low income students and those with medical dietary restrictions” as well.

CRGR encouraged UW-Madison to reevaluate the new meal plan.

“The changes to the dining policy should not proceed,” the statement said. “As members of the faith community, we stand with our Jewish and Muslim friends and all other students who are affected by this policy.”

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