Debt makes leaving CFS impossible for U of T students
Student unions at U of T owe the Canadian Federation of Students (CFS) more than half a million dollars in fees, according to a recent report. The debt, which is part of almost $1.4 million owed to the CFS by member unions in Ontario, has brought up several issues, including students’ ability to de-federate from the CFS, conflict within the CFS, and U of T’s role in the student movement.
The CFS is a national organization that administers the health plan and lobbies the governments on behalf of students. Students vote to join the CFS, and they can also vote to leave-unless they owe money.
With debt into five and six figures, it would be impossible for U of T’s student unions to de-federate from the CFS in the next several years. This keeps the organization’s influence secure on the country’s largest campus at the expense of students’ freedom to choose their student union.
The tight race in Trinity-Spadina took a bizarre turn last week when a volunteer with Liberal Tony Ianno’s campaign was found posing as a CBC reporter at the Students’ Administrative Council (SAC) office.
David Chu, whom The Varsity tracked down at Ianno’s campaign office on Sunday, refused to comment on the case until after election day.
Government members reconcile after SBFA meeting goes haywire
Usually the biggest problem at a campus group’s annual general meeting is acute boredom. Not so at last week’s Students for Barrier-Free Access (SBFA) AGM, which was replete with shouting matches and the threat of legal action.
SBFA is a student group that advocates for disabled students, working closely with U of T’s accessibility services. A main agenda item at last Thursday’s meeting was the election of a new executive.
“There were two opposing slates,” said Sam Rahimi, chair of SBFA before and after the AGM. “The slate that won the elections brought about 30 people out with them to make sure they would win, and they did.”