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USU delays decision on Evangelical Union

Alexandros Tsathas reports

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The University of Sydney Union (USU) has held off on a controversial decision to deregister the Evangelical Union – at least for the meantime.

Today’s March meeting saw a University-appointed lawyer provide independent advice to Board directors on the matter behind closed doors.

When the meeting was reopened to the public, USU President Alisha Aitken-Radburn announced that a final decision had not been made. She cited the situation’s sensitivity and legal complexity as reasons more time and advice would be needed before a verdict could be reached.

“The Union and Board of Directors is committed to resolving this together” said Aitken-Radburn, “we’re hoping to reach a really positive resolution”.

She reaffirmed the USU’s valuing of faith-based societies and labelled inflammatory media coverage of the topic “unhelpful”.

EU President George Bishop said that his society “welcomes the further consideration by the USU board on this issue.”

On March 23, the EU overwhelmingly voted in favour of keeping their controversial faith-based declaration. 

Members of the Catholic and Orthodox Christian societies were present as observers at the meeting. They also expressed their appreciation of the USU’s further consideration of the matter.

The Catholic Society maintains a faith-based declaration for those wishing to assume leadership roles. No such declarations are mandated by the Orthodox Christian society.

No deadline has been set for the USU’s final decision.