Endorsements: Winter 2018 Referendum Period
Policy on Implementation of a Fall Reading Week – YES
While a majority of Canadian universities have already implemented a minimum of four or more study days in the Fall semester, Mcgill belongs to a growing few that have not. According to a 2015 survey by Mcgill Enrollment Services, 71.5% of respondents were in favour of a Fall Reading Week, and research has suggested that such a break would offer some much-needed respite to new students who might be over-burdened with a transition to life at Mcgill. The adoption of such a policy would mandate SSMU to support campaigns for the implementation of a Fall Reading Week at Mcgill through the offices of the VP External and the VP University Affairs, giving students added legitimacy to pursue this goal. As such, The Daily endorses a Yes vote regarding the implementation of such a policy.
ECOLE Fee Levy – YES
Created in 2011, the Educational Community Living Environment (ECOLE) at Mcgill, a collective living house and community space on the university’s downtown campus, has strived to exemplify a model of urban sustainable living through applied student research, alternative education and community building. Without the organization’s $2.00 opt-outable student fee levy, ECOLE would be incapable of supporting its own open study lounge hours, free space booking services, and putting on events and programming around environmental and societal sustainability. As such, The Daily endorses a Yes vote for this fee.
BSN Fee Renewal and Fee increase – YES
The Black Students’ Network (BSN) at Mcgill works everyday towards making our university campus safer and more accessible for Black students, and is committed to educating the Mcgill undergraduate community by hosting panels and events to discuss racial issues. In recent years, the BSN has become the main financial contributor to Black History Month at Mcgill, and has came forward and made it clear that without a fee levy, continuing to put on BHM at Mcgill will not be possible. As such, The Daily endorses both a renewal of the BSN’S opt-outable fee and a levy to increase the fee to $1.00 per student for full-time students and $0.50 per student for part time students per semester, from $0.40 per full-time student and $0.20 for part-time students.
Amendments to the University Centre Fee, the SSMU Clubs Fee, and the SSMU Campus Life Fee – YES
With the SSMU Building closure comes a new set of problems for SSMU, mainly concerning its ability to house the numerous clubs and services integral to Mcgill student life. Many of the fees that have helped SSMU keep said clubs and services going have strict definitions of how they can be spent, which could potentially constrain SSMU’S abilities to secure spaces for them with the building closure. These three motions would allow SSMU some more leeway in managing obstacles in the coming months, obstacles that include paying third-parties other than Mcgill University for expenses related to SSMU Building closure, allowing SSMU to use significant rollovers in the Club Fund and the Campus Life Fund from previous years, and amending SSMU’S Internal Regulations to allow SSMU to grant money to clubs that are not currently running a deficit. The Daily endorses a Yes vote in these three referendum questions.