Votes now on the SFSS Referendum

It’s voting time again at SFU – the SFU Referendum is electing the Board of Directors for the SFSS, as well as three different questions.

Up for debate is

1) The necessity for an International Relations Officer
2) The continuation of the Upass Program
3) An increase in the World University Service of Canada fee, which charges students a dollar a semester to sponsor two refugees per year – the charge is being raised by $0.50 for full-time and $0.25 for part-time students.

Since I don’t know many people running in the elections (aside from current Education Representative Shiva Manavipour, who I had interviewed about her volunteer experience with the SFU Nightline), I am most keen to make sure the Upass program stays in place. It’s good for the environment, brings down public transit costs by 270% (via SFU Peak), and I don’t mind the $15/semester increase too much. Of course, I’d prefer the price froze, but I’ll take this option over no Upass at all! In 2009, I had voted yes to including colleges around B.C. in the program – there’ve been cuts to financial assistance for post-secondary education, and the U-pass is vital to bringing down transit costs. Plus, it’s good for the environment! Imagine the rise in demand for parking that’ll come with more students relying on cars to get to school. Plus, considering the condition of the roads, I strongly doubt they can remain as they are without serious problems. I suppose the price increase is a consequence of integrating the institutions and inflation.

There’s an abundance of information – it’s a bit overwhelming. My main motive in voting is to ensure the Upass program remains.

If you’d like to read more, the Peak published an article on the Upass, and read the details of the referendum propositions.

Read what each SFSS position entails in article (bonus: visuals in the PDF format!)

You can also read the platforms of all the SFSS candidates.

So hurry before Thursday is over and cast your votes. What strategies do you use to research the candidates and questions at SFSS referendas?

By Sonya Reznitsky