‘Not afraid to think big’: Bailey Henderson runs for ASUC external affairs vice president

Photo of Bailey Henderson
Theo Wyss-Flamm/Senior Staff
Bailey Henderson, one of two Queer Alliance and Resource Center-endorsed ASUC candidates, hopes to expand affordable housing and funding for marginalized communities as ASUC external affairs vice president.

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Bailey Henderson, a junior political science and global studies double major at UC Berkeley, is running for ASUC external affairs vice president, or EAVP.

Henderson currently serves as the government relations director for ASUC EAVP Riya Master. Henderson is running on a three-part platform focusing on community advocacy, community engagement and community growth.

“What we really need to do now is create a future we want for campus,” Henderson said. “To do so, we must ensure advocacy, engagement and growth as much as we can.”

Having worked in the ASUC EAVP’s office since his freshman year, Henderson said his experience has helped him determine what the office does well and what it needs to improve on, ultimately helping him decide what he wants to do as EAVP.

Under the community advocacy platform, Henderson plans to fight for more funding for marginalized communities and uplift their voices to ensure they receive the policies they need. Simultaneously, he wants to make sure the EAVP office does not bring harm to these communities.

In response to the low student engagement on campus due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Henderson aims to create open Berkeley student conferences where registered student organizations and the ASUC can solidify their priorities in tandem rather than relying solely on the University of California Student Association.

“Sometimes we miss the voices on the ground because it’s a privilege and a luxury to be involved in those spaces,” Henderson said.

Henderson also wants to address the growing enrollment issues with housing and sustainability that arose this year.

With community growth in mind, Henderson is fighting for affordable and accessible housing, access to transportation and financial aid reform despite tuition increases.

“One of the reasons why it’s been such a joy to work with him is seeing him bring his own enthusiasm to brainstorming innovative approaches to our work,” said EAVP external chief of staff Raina Zhao in an email. “He’s not afraid to think big, and that is such a godsend when we’re working together — and an absolutely valuable quality for an EAVP to have.”

The Queer Alliance and Resource Center also announced Henderson as one of two queer and trans community-endorsed ASUC candidates Monday.

Within the ASUC EAVP’s office, Henderson said he has found many opportunities to work for the LGBTQ+ community. These opportunities include advocating for and successfully including LGBTQ+ identity and orientation protections in California’s Office of Civil Rights Title IX law, as well as expanding menstrual health and mental health equity.

“I want every student to have the opportunity to advocate for themselves the same way I’ve been able to in this office,” Henderson said.

Contact Denise Cruz at [email protected].