Students’ Council meets every second Tuesday in the Council Chambers in University Hall at 6 p.m. Council meetings are open to all students. The next meeting will be held at ECHA L1 490 on Tuesday, Sept. 25, where free food will be provided for all attendees.
Last meeting, council offered a repast of chili, fresh fruit and dessert squares. So if you’re at all interested in student politics, swing by, fill your belly, and get your democracy on.
Council was short-lived with another in-camera session and questions about Lister Hall’s situation surrounding changes to health and safety policies and the U of A administration’s new staffing model.
At the beginning of the session during the Speaker’s Business segment, council speaker Rory Tighe lectured councilors on the confidentiality of in-camera sessions.
This was due to a news article published in the Sept. 5 issue of The Gateway , in which four councilors confirmed that the SU is planning to spend $40,000 towards legal action against the university’s charges.
“That was a violation of in-camera by four members of Students’ Council, which is an incredibly serious offence,” Tighe said.
He added that disciplinary sanctions through council or the Discipline Interpretation and Enforcement (DIE) Board could be placed on those councilors should their identities be discovered.
Tighe added that this could lead to further fines or sanctions on the councilors, and then delved into the legal implications surrounding the offence.
“It really reflects poorly on the Students’ Union and the students who elected whoever individual that is, to see that their elected (councilor) is disregarding the rules of their own body,” he said.
A written letter from Arts Councilor Mike McGinn was addressed to Yamagishi in the council order papers, regarding points about the Memorandum of Agreement made in a Sept. 5 Gateway editorial about Lister Hall changes.
McGinn asked whether or not any memoranda had been broken, how Yamagishi would respond to the editorial, and whether a copy of the agreement could be sent to council.
Yamagishi sent a written response in the Late Additions of the order papers, stating that he believed point two of the agreement had been broken in the Memorandum of Agreement.
He added that the SU disputes that the LHSA was provided with any evidence that could categorize the behaviour at an intermediate level, in regards to the university being able to make changes should they have evidence to categorize the health and safety issues at that level.
Another written question was posed to Vice-President (Student Life) Saadiq Sumar, asking about the information The Gateway obtained for an article in the Sept. 5 issue. The letter asked whether the SU executives thought the 100 judicial incidents reported last year in Lister (of which 22 involved EMS, UAPS, or EPS) were considered urgent.
“It is our belief that for something to be urgent it should either be an issue that has recently surfaced or which has been worsening,” Sumar wrote back in the late additions.
“It appears that the issues are not urgent, but rather in need of continued improvement.”
There was further inquiry from McGinn during council regarding the breach of in-camera regulations. In order to discuss this further, council made a motion to move in-camera, which lasted for approximately 20 minutes.
One councillor from the United States asked for a moment of silence to commemorate the September 11 attacks. Two councillors replied, stating that they were not American, and suggested holding a moment of silence for the Chechnyan Massacre as well.
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