By: Nathan Hood
The February 25th meeting of Council saw the reading of a letter criticizing Love & Sex Week, an in-camera discussion of executive evaluations, an update on FOIPP Act work, and the consideration of bylaw and policy amendments.
Love & Sex Week Criticized by Queer Collective
Presidential candidate Justin Clory read a letter about Love & Sex Week on behalf of the Queer Collective, which claims to represent the LGBTQIA2S+ community on PEI. The letter said that Love & Sex Week was not as inclusive as advertised. The letter went on to cite specific examples, including gender discrimination during trivia at The Wave and a lack of events for queer students.
Vice President Student Life Megan Rix, the executive responsible for Love & Sex Week, was not present at the meeting. Vice President Academic & External Taya Nabuurs apologized for any harm the campaign might have caused and said the executive committee would discuss the issues that were raised.
The Student Union has since published a formal apology on their website.
Executive Evaluations Discussed
Council deliberated on the results of the latest round of executive evaluations for approximately 90 minutes. The SU’s executive committee bylaw requires evaluations to be conducted in January. In the fall, evaluations were discussed after a two-month delay. The results of executive evaluations are confidential.
The reports submitted by executives to assist Council in evaluating their performance are publicly available and can be accessed below:
Movement on Freedom of Information
President Chelsea Perry and Nabuurs said they have been working recently on the freedom of information file. It was mentioned that there would be a joint press release between the SU and the Faculty Association articulating their position on the issue, as well as a potential press conference.
Nabuurs said the SU had submitted a report for the PEI Government’s review of the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act and that the submission would be made public in the near future.
Prince Edward Island is the only province in which postsecondary institutions are not covered under freedom of information legislation.
Bylaw and Policy Amendments Considered
Council reviewed proposed changes to its policies and its bylaws.
There was a discussion about a policy amendment that would allow the policy committee to approve changes to policy without the approval of Council. This was amendment was sent back to the policy committee for review.
Council approved amendments to the SU’s employee training and disciplinary procedures policy. Notably, the amendments will now have aspects of complaint investigation move to the General Manager from the Ombudsperson, the SU’s independent investigator per the SU’s constitution and bylaws. The Ombudsperson is no longer mandated to sit in on interviews relating to formal complaints involving employees, with this responsibility shifting to the VP Finance and the General Manager. Council representation on investigatory teams has also been eliminated.
Council approved a new external organization membership policy, which will govern the terms and the SU’s expectations of membership and/or partnership with a third party organization.
Council also discussed an amendment to the SU’s elections bylaw that would increase the number of signatures required to run for an SU executive position. The consideration of the amendment was tabled until the next meeting.