College News

ASM passes resolution in support of fair trade certification at virtual meeting

The Associated Students of Madison gathered via video conference to pass a resolution supporting UW-Madison’s efforts toward a Fair Trade University Certification.  

The Associated Students of Madison gathered via video conference to pass a resolution supporting UW-Madison’s efforts toward a Fair Trade University Certification.  

Image By: Dana Brandt

With social distancing guidelines keeping everyone apart and many away from campus, the Associated Students of Madison gathered over video conference for their student council meeting Wednesday and passed a resolution supporting UW-Madison’s fair trade efforts.

Sustainability Chair Sanauz Alaei and ASM Vice Chair Morgan Grunow sponsored the legislation, which signals support for the university's quest to become certified for fair trade — business commitments devised to ensure producers in developing countries make a fair profit when trading goods. 

“[The legislation] is basically saying that ASM supports Madison's efforts in becoming a fair trade certified university, as outlined by Fair Trade Campaigns,” Alaei said. 

Fair Trade Campaigns, a body that oversees the certifications of cities, schools, congregations and universities, requires campus-operated venues to sell at least two fair trade products. Additionally, office suppliers and food service providers must make fair trade products available and the campus has to increase fair-trade awareness, partially through the creation of a fair trade committee. 

The requirements also mandate shared governance bodies pass resolutions in support of fair trade certification — which ASM accomplished through passing the legislation. 

Achieving a Fair Trade University Certification will allow UW-Madison to “enhance its image as a leader in sustainability” and “more effectively educate the campus community about social justice,” the resolution said. 

Madison became the first U.S. capital city to become fair trade certified in 2010, and five UW System universities are fair trade certified or working toward certification.

The legislation passed unanimously with no debate. 

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