I was one of the roughly 350 attendees at uOttawa’s first General Assembly (GA); unfortunately, there weren’t enough at any time to reach quorum. The GA was cut off during question period at 9 p.m., due to an arbitrary ruling from the chair.
I had a few questions that I waited since before 8 p.m. to ask, but was prevented from doing so by the meeting’s ending, along with about seven other students in line. Since I could not ask them at the public forum the SFUO (Student Federation of University of Ottawa) voted on and organized, here they are;
1) Where were decisions about the GA’s format made, and why were they not publicized with the agenda? The chair’s stated 30 minutes for questions, and 9 pm cut-off time, were made arbitrarily during the assembly and not mentioned anywhere on the SFUO’s website, the Facebook event, posters, or even at the door.
2) Why did the executive receive an increase to their salary this year?
3) Why is there a student employee position that pays more than an executive member, despite being unelected?
4) During 101 Week, 101 Week Guides would have had their bracelets cut if they broke the equity clause, barring them from volunteering at any future Week. Why did the vice president social (Ikram Hamoud) impose such stringent restrictions upon her hundreds of unpaid volunteers, and neglect to emphasize them upon the performers she paid thousands of dollars to?
5) Why does the SFUO hire a chair for its BOA (Board of Adminsitration) and GA from Toronto, or a comptroller who primarily resides in Montreal? Do you pay their travel expenses?
6) Why, as of Nov. 18, has the SFUO not published the minutes of a single BOA meeting since June 2013? Why are executive meeting minutes not published at all?
7) Will you consider that, of all SFUO members, this is how the 0.9 per cent who cared enough to skip class, work, and essays to show up reacted?
I think the president was correct when she said the “GA is what accountability looks like” at this school. Anne-Marie Roy, Ikram Hamoud, Dave Eaton, Nicole Desnoyers, Maya McDonald, Chris Hynes, and executive coordinator Amy Hammett, will you answer my questions?