Council Meeting - Nov 30, 2016

Wednesday night's University Students' Council meeting ended far earlier than expected as councillors quickly moved through several motions. 

The meeting was delayed because the individual responsible for presenting Western's mental health plan did not show up, due to unspecified reasons.

Most items on the agenda were moved through quickly, but there were two topics that were heavily debated during the meeting.

Western's sexual violence policy was discussed for a while with USC communications officer Emily Ross presenting the policy. 

Some councillors were displeased with the policy's use of the term "victim." Ross said she would take the councillors' concerns to Western's administration. The expected date for Western's sexual violence policy to be completed is Dec. 6. 

Another hotly debated topic at the meeting was Ivey councillor David DiBrina's motion on a standing resolution of council. The motion stated: "The nature of executive appointments are problematic for a variety of reasons, including but not limited to a lack of transparency, accountability and a fair process."

Although there wasn't much debate on the motion itself, an amendment made by secretary treasurer Isaac Jacobi was contested by several councillors. 

Jacobi wanted to bar councillors from running for certain positions, citing the disadvantage that students-at-large have. He explained that councillors tend to vote for other councillors instead of non-council members. In the end, the motion passed with 76 per cent of councillors voting in favour of the amendment and the motion passing unanimously. 

Student programs officer Allie Adamo discussed some changes to soph applications. This year, the interviews will take place in a group setting, however, a number of council members expressed concern that some applicants may be uncomfortable with this setup.

Also at the meeting, the USC's policy paper topics were presented to council — mental health on campus, pedestrian safety on campus and student mobility in London — without any objections. 

The USC execs discussed the upcoming elections with a reminder that applications are opening up Dec. 5. This year, the USC is hosting a "pledge to vote" event in the University Community Centre in which students who vow to vote will receive free coffee.

Other items on the agenda included executive reports, standing committee reports, a presentation of the USC's annual report, election of councillors to the student awards committee, Beerfest discussions and a Food Support Services report. 

By the end of the night, councillors were treated to a pizza feast and left happy. Some lucky councillors even managed to snag black cards.

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Managing Editor of Content

Rita was the managing editor of content for Volume 111. She was previously a news editor for two years and graduated with an honours specialization in political science.

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