We Will Lose from Per-Faculty Fee-Levy Referendums

I started an undergraduate degree in accountancy this January, and I already love being a JMSB student.

I’m also voting no to per-faculty fee-levy referendums in the upcoming CSU elections.

When I learned that the referendum was happening, and that some students in my faculty pushed for it at the last minute, I was quite shocked. Never did any of the proponents of this issue make the case properly to JMSB students about why this was so urgent.

I would like to state for the record that JMSB students are not united on this issue. Many of us are glad that fee-levy groups exist and we access their services regularly, whether it is the Concordia Volunteers Abroad Program or the People’s Potato. These groups are part of what makes Concordia so great and I’m proud to support them.

Plus, groups like Le Frigo Vert, CJLO and the Sustainability Action Fund have a positive impact on the Montreal community at large, and build the reputation of our university as vibrant and dynamic. Fee-levy groups offer all students volunteer, internship and job opportunities, as well as the experience of running a non-for-profit corporation.

The years of work that have gone into building these resources will be undermined with per-faculty fee-levy referendums. We all could lose so much.

Community means supporting things even if you don’t always directly benefit from it. We do so because we know that building community support systems build better societies.

Per-faculty fee-levy referendums destroy this idea in favor of a cold ideological vision that says, “If I don’t directly benefit, I don’t care.” The existence of projects like CASA Cares and the Sustainable Business Group’s Business Beyond Tomorrow conference, which are fundamentally premised on the idea of social responsibility, prove that JMSB embraces an ideology in support of community!

I’m glad that within JMSB there’s a sense that we are part of a larger community and contribute to it. “CASA Cares,” JMSB cares, and I feel the overwhelming majority of Concordia students care as well. We should stay united as students in defense of services that mutually benefit us all, and make Concordia an interesting place to learn.

I encourage my fellow JMSB students, and all students at Concordia, to vote no to per-faculty fee-levy referendums and to visit ConcordiaCommunity.org for more information on this important issue.

Laura Macdonald