Volume 93, Issue 24

Wednesday, October 13, 1999


Saugeen no longer a democracy

Suspensions mean a lot less cash

Envious of Western's school spirit

The absolute last word on clubs week

Who's running this show?

Saugeen no longer a democracy

Re: "Saugeen pub questions linger" Oct. 5

To the Editor:

It is time for Western's housing and ancillary services to recognize that totalitarianism is not an effective form of management for Saugeen-Maitland Hall.

With respect to the building, I can say that I lived in SMH last year, I was a part of the controversial pub crawl this year and I am also a member of the orientation team at Western as a science soph.

At the request of my frosh, I attended the pub crawl event with many other sophs (including a floormate from last year, Brad Rochefort, who presently bears the stigma of disciplinary action from housing services).

The pub crawl was an amazing social endeavour whereby participating residents further integrated themselves into the social landscape of this community we call Western. The sophs present at the event, including myself, facilitated a safe, orderly and educational experience.

Being a part of the orientation team here is not about promoting alcohol abuse or disrespecting the efforts of residence staff. It is solely about being there for the people who need us most – the first-year students, 1,200 of whom happen to live in SMH.

Experiencing the autocracy and the lack of accountability of residence staff last year is the reason I opted out of residence life this year.

Accusations, interrogations, the lack of access to counsel or advice, the inability to face your accuser and closed door disciplinary meetings. No, these are not the methods of Nazi Germany I describe, but rather a few of the tools used last year and this year by residence staff to intimidate and frighten residents into submission.

Last time I checked we lived in a democracy and these sorts of things weren't supposed to happen. Sorry housing, but the Charter of Rights and Freedoms supersedes any sort of signed resident's contract that you have filed away.

Residents have rights too and maybe residence staff forgot that over the last year as they tried turning "the Zoo" into the Alcatraz of Western Road.

My residence experience was an amazing social, academic and cultural awakening due in part to the dedication and love shown by sophs and floormates alike. I hate the thought of any Saugeen resident missing out on the diversity, opportunity and splendor that Western has to offer because of the delusions of grandeur experienced by residence staff and Western housing services.

What next, barbed wire fences and searchlights at SMH?

Luke "Casanova" Petrykowski
Biology II

To Contact The Opinions Department:

Copyright The Gazette 1999