After almost three years of planning, delays, and bureaucratic hurdles, an official opening of the Campus Queer Space has been announced by OUSA for 23 of July at 10.30am.
The space, which is located near the terrace lounge (upstairs from the link), includes furniture, decorations, and amenities like a kitchen space. It will provide a secure and supportive physical space for the queer community on campus.
The space will be accessible via student ID cards. “Students will need to be given swipe card access to be able to use the room. Students will request access to the room through an online form, they will need to agree to follow the rules of the room set out by OUSA, and they will then be granted access to the room by way of their student ID," according to OUSA President Michaela Waite-Harvey.
Michaela also remarked on how good it was to have a campus queer space. “Having a queer space on campus has been a long-held goal of the OUSA executive over the past four years. At the end of last year OUSA finally secured a suitable location to fit the requirements of a dedicated safe space for students in the Rainbow community.”
As previously reported by Critic, the space has been under works since 2018 and was meant to open by the end of April. Works were done to add the kitchen area and other amenities over the summer, but a blocked sprinkler caused safety compliance issues that needed to be addressed.
The opening on 23 July will be led by Michaela, and there will be a tour of the space and a Q & A session. There will also be a blessing from the Uni’s Māori Chaplain.