Student reps question KSA’s secret session
News / January 18, 2013
Constituency groups take issue with in camera decisions.
By Sarah Schuchard
[associate news editor]
Several student constituencies and their representatives have raised their concerns publicly in an open letter over the Kwantlen Student Association’s (KSA) approval of a pro-life group as an official student club and the secrecy surrounding the decision.
The letter, dated Dec. 26, stated that although they understand the need to receive legal advice in camera, they do not agree with council making their decision “behind closed doors,” and ultimately not giving students, and constituency members a chance to voices their concerns.
The letter was signed by multiple parties, including Women Organizing Opportunities for Women (WOOW), the Pride Kwantlen Collective, women’s constituency representative Arzo Ansary, queer constituency representative Lydia Luk, aboriginal constituency representative Melinda Bige, and students of colour constituency representative, Richard Hosein.
During the Jan. 2 KSA council meeting, several of the signatories reiterated their concerns from the letter.
Luk attempted to move a motion asking the KSA to hold a public forum for students on the issue, and to hold a vote that would allow all council members and constituency members to have their votes publicly recorded. Luk’s motion was declared out of order after senate representative Christopher Girodat argued that the motion that had already been voted on and could not be reconsidered.
Girodat also advised council not to allow public access to the discussion and voting centring around the pro-life club, that occurred at their Dec. 2 meeting.
“The entire discussion was based on privileged advice,” said Girodat. “The council did not discuss social issues in camera . . . I think it would be reckless for council to release that privileged advice.”
Shortly thereafter, Girodat moved a motion to move in camera, ejecting staff members and Runner reporters from the meeting.