CUPFA Responds to Joint CSU/GSA Statement, March 5, 2012

The Association is pleased to report about the leadership taken by the Concordia Student Union and the Graduate Student Association in responding to the concerns of our members during the student boycott of classes.

As you may know, in advance of the CSU/GSA General assembly’s on March 6th and 7th respectively, some individual Departments and the Faculty of Fine Arts have voted to begin boycotting classes effective Monday March 5th. This has created some confusion within the University as to how to respond. Regrettably we had two incidents today that involved our members. Heightened emotions and confusion will only lead to a deterioration of relations and in the end, hurt the goals the students are trying to achieve.

The Joint Statement from the CSU/GSA should put to rest the behaviour of the few students who errantly believed that confrontation with faculty benefits their cause. It is not we as faculty members who are the target of their angst but government. Please bring a copy of the joint statement with you in the event that students who are picketing remain unaware of the position adopted by their respective student associations.

The Association would also like to take this moment to make an appeal to our members to do their utmost to support the student campaign in the ways we can legally do so. We urge CUPFA members to join the pickets with the students when you are not teaching. We remain as pedagogues caregivers as much in the classroom as out of the classroom. Our presence may assist in calming situations and, more importantly, demonstrate to the students we share a common concern about educational government policies.

We object to policies that serve only to create greater student debt, diminish student enrolments and lead to a greater privatisation of our institutions of higher learning. We are proud that Quebec leads the country in accessibility across the broad spectrum of our population. We are proud to be members of a community that recognizes that when we all pull together, we can meet any challenge.

Please bring the attached Joint CSU/GSA Statement with you to your classes. It should relieve any possible confrontations that you may encounter. The CUPFA Executive hopes the statement will serve you well.

Dr. David Douglas
Chair of Communications, CUPFA Executive