Infighting at FASA
Questions Arise Over Constitution After VP Finance’s Termination
A former Fine Arts Student Alliance executive is accusing the alliance’s presidents of violating its constitution.
On Sept. 1, FASA presidents Paisley Sim and Neal Moignard sent a letter of termination to the alliance’s VP Finance, Laura Glover.
Glover refused to resign from her post, citing Article 11, Section 1 of the FASA constitution, which states that “The President, Vice-Presidents and Councillors may be recalled to election by two-thirds of sitting Councillors for misappropriation of funds, dereliction of duties, violation of these by-laws or of the Regulations adopted hereunder. Two weeks written notice of the proposed recall must be given to the person subject to the recall…”
Sim and Moignard contend that because Glover was hired as VP Finance rather than elected, she is not subject to Article 11 of FASA’s constitution.
Glover was hired as FASA’s VP Finance in April and was interviewed by Tricia Middleton, Concordia’s coordinator of Student Relations and outgoing VP Finance Julie Johnston. During the interview, Glover said she made it clear to both Middleton and Johnston she would be away for most of the summer volunteering in Costa Rica.
Over the course of the summer, Glover was supposed to organize a budget with the other executives, reimburse students for Special Project Grants during the 2009-2010 year and maintain her VP Finance email account.
“She didn’t fulfill any of her duties,” said Sim. “Nothing got done and we were really backed up before the start of the school year.”
Glover confirmed that she had only worked 29.5 hours for FASA over the summer and hadn’t checked her FASA email account for a period of about 90 days while she was in Costa Rica.
After returning to Montreal, Glover met with Sim and Moignard. During the Aug. 31 meeting, they asked for Glover to resign, citing concerns over Glover’s ability to balance her duties as VP Finance along with her residence advisor job.
After she refused to resign, Glover was presented with a letter of termination signed the next day.
“Their decision was undemocratic and unconstitutional,” said Glover. “This isn’t about me keeping my job, it’s about Fine Arts students knowing that their presidents are acting against the constitution.”
Sim and Moignard said their decision to fire Glover was made without consulting any other FASA executives or council members. The VP Finance is recognized as an official position of FASA’s executive with the same voting privileges as any of the other four vice presidents.
In a Sept. 7 interview with The Link, Sim reiterated her stance on Glover’s termination.
“She was a hired employee who wasn’t doing her job,” said Sim. “The constitution doesn’t apply to her position.”
Both Sim and Moignard conceded that FASA’s constitution needed “clarification” and said they would be open to amending it in the future.
“I wasn’t given adequate training to do my job,” said Glover. “A part of planning the annual budget is doing it with the other executives. The other executives were out of town over the summer. And I had made it perfectly when I was hired clear that I would be too.”
Concordia Student Union President Heather Lucas has met with both parties and told The Link she wanted to see the situation handled internally.
On Sept. 7, Sim announced the re-hiring of Julie Johnston as the new FASA VP Finance.
Glover no longer has any desire to keep her post as VP Finance. She has set up a website called fasareform.ca to inform students about her situation and she plans on bringing the issue of her dismissal to the association’s first council meeting this fall.
This article originally appeared in Volume 31, Issue 05, published September 14, 2010.