4 to 5 Movement

Did you know
that "sexual orientation" is not included in Notre Dame's non-discrimination clause?  Did you know that there is not a recognized lgbtq-ally student club? "In due time" can no longer be an excuse.  Due time is due now, and the 4 to 5 Movement plans on raising the voice of the majority to make Notre Dame a welcoming place for its lgbtq members of the community.

4 to 5 Movement at Notre Dame Releases “It Needs to Get Better” Video
NOTRE DAME, IN – On Tuesday, February 28th, 2012 the 4 to 5 Movement at the University of Notre Dame released an “It Needs to Get Better” video.  The 4 to 5 Movement is a coalition comprised of Notre Dame students, faculty, staff, clubs and groups, alumni/ae, and groups that support full inclusion for GLBTQ members of the community.  The video was made in the midst of a call from students, faculty, staff, alumni, and other supporters for Notre Dame to grant official club status to its Gay-Straight Alliance (GSA) student group (AllianceND) and to include “sexual orientation” in its legally binding nondiscrimination clause.

The “It Needs to Get Better” video premiered to one hundred members of the campus community, including students, faculty, and staff.  The premiere event featured speeches from AllianceND member Samuel Costanzo, Progressive Student Alliance co-president Alex Coccia, and video producer Brenna Williams.  In her address, Williams proclaimed, “I want to be in the last graduating class at Notre Dame that cannot say they were able to be a part of a GSA.” 

In addition to releasing the video, members of the 4 to 5 Movement delivered a packet of testimonials to University President Father John Jenkins.  The testimonials numbered fifty pages and were written by undergraduate and graduate students, from both GLBTQ students and allies, stating why it needs to get better at Notre Dame.  The cover letter to the testimonials reads in part: “The GLBTQ members of our community and their allies cannot accept the claims that enough is being done or that the University is doing as much as it can. We cannot accept these claims because we know first hand that they are not true.”  Responses to claims commonly made in response to the recognition of a Gay-Straight Alliance and the addition of “sexual orientation” in the nondiscrimination clause were published in an appendix.  Coccia recently stated, “The high standard to which the administration holds the entire Notre Dame community (including itself)…must actually be practiced. If the administration truly believed its own spirit of inclusion, University policy would reflect it.”

The video, which has already received over 10,000 views on YouTube, is one of multiple upcoming 4 to 5 Movement outreach and support initiatives.  The 4 to 5 Movement has been successful in building a coalition with student groups from other Catholic institutions, including CUAllies at Catholic University, among others.  The movement has already attracted national media attention from The Huffington Post and other blogs and was successful earlier last month in the effort to get the Notre Dame Student Senate to pass resolutions calling for the creation of a Gay-Straight Alliance and inclusive nondiscrimination clause. 

About the 4 to 5 Movement
The 4 to 5 Movement is a broad coalition comprised of Notre Dame students, faculty, staff, clubs and groups, alumni/ae, and non-Notre Dame groups that support full inclusion for LGBTQ members of the community.  The 4 to 5 Movement is facilitated by the Progressive Student Alliance.  It was started in October 2011.  The name of the movement comes from a statement given by Brian Sims at a talk on campus in March 2011.  Citing the Pew Forum, Hamilton College polls, and the National Youth Survey, he stated, “Four out of Five. Four out of five college students, or college educated people between the ages of eighteen and thirty in the United States right now support the general package of gay civil rights…. Eighty percent of you support my rights, you only think that it’s about a third of you.”  The 4 to 5 Movement has three goals: “to make it clear that being an ally makes [one] part of the majority” in order to raise the voices of allies at Notre Dame; “to take actions that promote a safe and welcoming environment at Notre Dame for members of the community who identify as LGBTQ”; and “to take actions to address/change the non-inclusive non-discrimination clause and the lack of recognition for a gay-straight alliance student club (AllianceND).”
More information on the 4 to 5 Movement can be found at 4to5Movement.org, on the Facebook group and on Twitter at @4to5Movement.
Full Appendix – The 4 to 5 Movement

Faculty/Staff Letter in Support of the LGBTQ Community at Notre Dame