Volume 93, Issue 94

Tuesday, March 28, 2000


O-week becomes issue again

UWOFA may strike

Ancillary fees get the big chill

Shinerama fund-raising threatened by the Safe Streets Act

U of T sit-in comes to an end

Campus break out of break-ins


Caught on campus

Shinerama fund-raising threatened by the Safe Streets Act

By Joel Brown
Gazette Staff

Conflicting views between the London Police and the province's attorney general over the jurisdiction of the Safe Streets Act, enacted last November, has Shinerama organizers concerned about the annual fund-raiser's future.

Bruce Brown, London's director of legal services and author of a report submitted to London city council last month, said any one participant who "went on a roadway in order to solicit donations from motorists" would be in violation of the Act which was originally intended to keep squeegee kids off the road.

Brown said the new jurisdiction would be applied to Western's Shinerama event, where approximately 4,000 university students go out into the London area and ask for donations to raise money for Cystic Fibrosis.

"Traditionally, participants of the event have asked for money from motorists on the streets," Brown said. "We have always discouraged students from doing this."

London police chief Al Gramolini said although Shinerama was a charitable event, it would have to change the way it operated because it was now considered against the law. "It really does limit the way Shinerama operates. The difficulty is we only enforce the law, we don't make it. It was the province's decision."

An email sent by the president of Western's Legal Society, Michael Rubinoff, to Attorney General James Flaherty questioned if Shinerama and other similar charitable events would be affected by the act.

Rubinoff said Flaherty responded to the email by saying the Safe Streets Act was not aimed at courteous solicitation, meaning Shinerama should not be affected by the new legislation, as long as students stayed away from motor vehicles.

"The police definitely interpret this differently than we do," said Chris Townsend, president of London's Canadian Cystic Fibrosis Foundation branch.

Western's Shinerama commissioner and fourth-year computer science student, Jaime Notman, said she was concerned about the misunderstanding.

Even though London was the only participating city so far to rule against Shinerama she said she believed Brown's report would definitely set a precedent across the province.

Timothy Shorthill, Western's orientation officer for next year, said he did not think the new legislation would effect Shinerama. "For years we've been urging students to stay off the streets. We will not be pursuing this matter anymore whatsoever. It's not going to affect us."

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