According to a recent email from the Human Sexuality Task Force, the question of whether Eastern will hire facult in same-sex marriages will be the major point of concern as EU moves into the third and final phase of its “Conversation on Human Sexuality.” This phase is titled “The Discernment Phase,” and it will span the current semester. According to the Task Force, “Spring 2016 will be devoted to a series of discernment forums, some open to all staff, students, and faculty while others focus on the concerns of discrete groups.”
The schedule of remaining events is as follows.
Feb. 1 — 7:00-8:30 p.m., Gough Great Room: “A forum on the implications of changing or not changing sexuality policies.” For students. Resource persons will supply background information while student panelists and the audience will respond to questions gathered from the SGA and other sources.
The next three events will be forums for faculty on the implications of changing or not changing sexuality policies.
Jan. 29 — 3:15-5:00 p.m., McInnis 120-121: “Professional Implications.” For faculty. Sandy Bauer from Social Work and the heads of other professional programs will address issues of accreditation and placement of interns related to non-discrimination policies.
Feb. 5 — 3:15-5:00 p.m., Eagle Great Room: “Doctrinal Implications.” For faculty. Christian Studies and Seminary faculty will serve as resource persons, reflecting on the relationship between sexuality policies and Christian doctrine, as reflected in Eastern’s foundational documents;
Feb. 12 — 3:15-5:00 p.m., McInnis 120-121: “Financial/Enrollment Implications.” For faculty. Kent Sparks, Vice President for Enrollment, and Lisa Titus, Vice President for Advancement, will serve as resource persons, providing background information for a discussion of sustainability related to Eastern’s sexuality policies.
These three forums will be followed by two final events.
Date and location TBD: “A forum on the implications of changing or not changing policies.” For staff.
March 18 — 3:15-5:00 p.m., McInnis Auditorium: “Closing Panel.” For staff, students, and faculty. This event will begin with a brief history of the sexuality project, followed by presentation of the elements that will feed into a final report, and audience response to these elements.
The conversations had at these events will largely inform the report that the Task Force will present to Dr. Duffett on April 15, which will in turn influence his decision regarding EU’s hiring policies. So the Task Force encourages everyone to attend and speak up.
Sources: eastern.edu/eu-sexuality, and an email from the Task Force titled “The Discernment Period (Spring 2016).”