UC Berkeley sophomore Amanda Hill is running for ASUC senate as an independent candidate.
Hill said they decided to run for a senate position because they were shocked by the amount of racism and violence that occurred in ASUC spaces. Endorsed by the queer community, Hill is running on platforms with two main sections: equity and inclusion, and health and safety.
Their work experience is coupled with their unique perspective as a Black, Mexican, queer and low-income student, Hill added. In addition, they also have extensive experiences both inside and outside of the ASUC that they believe make them qualified for the senate position.
“I was fortunate enough to receive a scholarship to a private school, so I have seen both ends of the spectrum, simultaneously,” Hill said. “Thanks to that, I know how to navigate a lot of spaces, I know how to push things through on several different fronts. I am aware and conscientious of the impact I have.”
Hill was the chief of staff for ASUC Academic Affairs Vice President Nicole Anyanwu when she was a senator last year, and now is the director of equity and inclusion in Anyanwu’s current office. They are also in multiple committees, including being the only ASUC candidate involved in academic programming for People’s Park.
Hill is running as an independent because of the personal freedom and opportunity to hold others accountable. They wanted to remain true to their moral compass, which can be difficult in the ASUC, according to Hill.
“I’ve witnessed violence against our Black community members,” Hill alleged. “I’ve witnessed people in senate chambers threatening to dox representatives.”
Hill is committed to making the ASUC a more accessible space for all, as well as collaborating with other officials if they get elected. If elected, they will also help create a comprehensive plan that addresses campus space allocation issues.
Hill’s platform includes plans to preserve campus’s green spaces, create “actually affordable” housing, defund UCPD and improve nighttime safety by adding additional lighting throughout the city and expanding Bear Walk.
“If we want to create a more diverse university, one of the major hurdles for that goal — especially with wanting to gain that ‘Hispanic-serving institution’ status — is housing affordability,” Hill said.
Hill also recognizes that one of the ASUC’s “fundamental” issues is properly representing community members’ voices.
If elected, they are committed to elevating community members’ narratives to the table, and not just speaking on their behalf, Hill said.
“Nothing is stopping anybody from including community leaders in standing meetings,” Hill said. “Nothing is stopping anyone from keeping these people in the loop — for them to be able to elevate their own narratives because, frankly, we should be allowed to.”
ASUC elections will be held virtually from April 5 to 7.