Matthew Brett 0

Open letter to students and the CSU

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Open letter to students and the CSU

We, the undersigned, call for a university-wide General Assembly to rebuild Concordia's student movement in the immediate future.

The economy faces a shaky recovery after the most significant economic crisis since the Great Depression.

Budget cuts to health care and education are being implemented here in Quebec, and the Canadian government is set to impose significant financial austerity measures well into 2014.

In reaction to these measures, francophone universities and CEGEPs here in Quebec are currently engaged in general assemblies, strikes, sit-ins and other forms of action. It’s working.

Students are converging in Quebec City this December 6, when the provincial government is scheduled to introduce a province-wide tuition hike.

But the Concordia Student Union remains largely absent from the scene. Here at Concordia, the CSU has not issued a single statement regarding the provincial budget or the financial crisis. There is something wrong with this picture.

And while our frustrations are clear, we truly desire to work together with the CSU to build a stronger student movement. It is a shame that Concordia has no visible presence in the midst of widespread social unrest.

In Britain last week, students arranged a national walk-out and protest with some 130,000 people in attendance. Academic Saskia Sassen recently praised student efforts in California, Iran, Greece and Puerto Rico.

Students there, she wrote, “are doing urban agriculture, collective cooking, environmentally sustainable practices, art, music... in brief, they are striving to build the elements of a different society.”

Concordia students and organizations are actively building upon this new society, but continued support and collaboration from the CSU is absolutely essential.

Struggles against tuition increases and the recently signed contract with Pepsi are necessary, but just the tip of the iceberg.

Concordia’s student movement needs to come together and take measured actions if it is to have any impact at the provincial, federal and international level. It is time we work together.

We, the undersigned, therefore call on the Concordia Student Union to organize a university-wide General Assembly during the week of February 14. We also call on faculty and staff, graduate, international and long-distance students to take part in this process. Enough is enough.
VERY IMPORTANT: PLEASE write your department or organizational affiliation NEXT TO your name. Thank you.


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