Getting Our Due

Graphic by Eric Bent

We deserve more from our university.

By the time we finally get to hang our Concordia degrees on our walls, we might not feel the same pride previous generations of students enjoyed.

This was slated to be a year of change for a school riddled with controversy. But those who ensure the safety and wellbeing of the student body are dragging their heels on important issues.
If the maze of construction that still clogs up Concordia’s Hall Building is any indication of things to come, it isn’t looking good.

With an administration that refuses to provide space for a sexual assault centre and a student union that claims to be incapable of representing its members, recent developments make us wonder why we’re shelling out so much money on the fees which are suppose to ensure these things get done.

Students are not getting many of the things they spent a summer hustling ice cream to pay for.

The biggest problem for the student body is the struggle to have their voices heard in an institution that has a history of putting money before education in recent years. This struggle is made even more impossible by a CSU who haven’t inspired much confidence.

We need a visible Concordia Student Union now more than ever. It should be impossible to miss them, but they are nowhere to be found. And neither are the posters for the $150,000 Orientation we were all forced to pay for in good faith.

On Monday, CSU executives locked themselves in their office and refused to answer for their lackluster Orientation efforts thus far. The Link made a point of knocking, and we will continue to do so when our best interests as students are fumbled by Concordia in any capacity.

Meanwhile, 23 of our peers are waiting for their fates to be decided on charges pressed by the university from allegedly blocking classes during tuition protests. The CSU is meant to represent them, but instead our union sits back and offers only excuses for their mistakes.

The CSU is not performing the very function that defines a union.

As for the administration, they have a responsibility to ensure our right to safety. Its refusal to provide the space or funding for a sexual assault centre, which would support and educate the students, is an example of the school putting money before our wellbeing.

Concordia’s 2110 Centre for Gender Advocacy has been campaigning for the centre since the fall of 2011.

This year, frosh leaders were required to participate in information sessions on sexual assault as a result the high number of complaints from the festivities last year.

Despite this, the administration refuses to even reform their policies and take the needed steps to address sexual assault as separate from sexual harassment. Under the current policy, ConU security will just call the police when assault is reported, regardless of the wishes of the victim. No documentation, no follow-up.

Lack of progress seems to plague this place at every turn.

And as shallow as it may seem, appearances have an undeniable affect on public opinion. The fact that construction in the Hall Building is still ongoing is completely ludicrous. In a building that is already difficult to navigate when its escalators, elevators and stairs are in working condition, this place is going to be a nightmare come Wednesday.­­

We deserve better from our union and our administration, and we fully intend to be belligerent in demanding more.