CSA lawsuit empties the pockets of students

Dear CSA Board:

I recently came upon a Facebook event notifying me that the CSA is planning to collaborate with the Canadian Federation of Students (CFS) to sue the University of Guelph using a secret motion that students have not been informed about.

[Facebook event  link here –Ed.]

The motion is as follows:

BIRT, the CSA pursue a joint application with the CFS against the University regarding the collection of CFS membership fees, BIFRT, the joint application seek court orders for the university to:
1. Remit the CFS membership fees collected in trust to the CSA,

2. Resume the collection of CFS membership fees immediately, and

3. To remit the equivalent of any uncollected CFS membership fees to the CSA

BIFRT, the CSA Board of Directors empower the Executive Committee to coordinate this application until a court decision is made with regular updates to the Board of Directors.

As board members, it is your duty to uphold the mandate provided to you by students. Overturning the results of a democratic referendum in which 73.5% of students voted to leave the CFS is wrong.
By suing the University, the money will ultimately be coming out of students’ pockets. Point 3 of the motion will sue the University for any uncollected CFS membership fees, which would amount to hundreds of thousands of dollars.

Continue reading


Board of Governors chooses to raise tuition… quite seriously

This opinion piece is in response to that entitled “Opinion: Board of Governors chooses to raise tuition again… SERIOUSLY?

I would first like to point out that our elected student representatives Mr. Blais and Mr. Straathof likely understand the fiscal situation facing the university better than any other undergraduate student due to their participation on the Board of Governors. The fact that both supported the tuition fee increase indicates to me that they must have had a compelling reason to do so which is in the best interests of students. Both students are very capable and determined individuals with a background of serving students.

I’m not sure if the author is aware, but the provincial government tightened its belt with the recent budget and is fighting a major deficit. If less funding is going to be coming from the government, where will it come from? Will it magically appear? Will the Board of Governors wave a wand and conjure up an endless supply of cash?

Continue reading


Student urges CSA not to be selective

An event posted in the recent Central Student Association (CSA) mass mailing recently emailed to all undergraduate students reads:

Tired of not getting your voice heard? Want a chance to speak to the top, FOR FREE? Tar Sands Action group will be paying the tab for you to call OBAMA or HARPER and say NO to the Alberta Tar Sands.

This message is overtly political, and presents one side of a very controversial issue. There are a number of problems in including such messages in your mass email.

It is critically important for the undergraduate student union to have a political voice. However, it is very worrying if a limited range of perspectives is presented on such contentious issues as the Alberta oil sands. Perhaps many students have not taken a stand on this issue. To win these students over, a coherent, logical argument should be presented on both sides, and students should be allowed to make an informed decision. Presenting one side is not, nor should it be, the mandate of the organization which purports to represent all undergraduate students.

Indeed, it is this sort of narrow-mindedness that we would chastise our elected representatives in Parliament for. It is crucial that the CSA rises above this. It is also important to keep in mind that the office is funded by all undergraduate students. Students of all beliefs and ideologies should have the right to have their opinions heard and voiced.

CSA, please truly advocate on behalf of your entire membership, and not just selective interests within it!