Volume 95, Issue 61

Tuesday, January 22, 2002
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UWO washrooms used for sex romps

Homeless vs. cops in rumble

Chapters: hates Hitler and campus bookstores

Protesting on the weekend is so not cool

Senate says no to Day of Action

Date rape drug sends woman to hospital

News Briefs

Ivey lecturer says "I told you so"

Senate says no to Day of Action

By Joel Brown
Gazette Staff

Despite requesting academic relief, students who plan to skip class to participate in a student protest next month will not be given immunity after their request was shot down by Western's Senate on Friday.

A motion calling for Senate's support of the Feb. 6 Day of Action protest – a nation-wide event organized by the Canadian Federation of Students aimed at encouraging federal and provincial government support for universities – was defeated by a 26-18 vote.

On behalf of students who plan to participate in the event, senator and medical biophysics graduate student John Thomas asked senate to "stand in solidarity with the students."

He called on professors to be lenient enough to make Feb. 6 "a penalty-free day where no student shall receive an academic penalty for not attending class."

While many of the administrators and deans on Senate said they had sympathy for the students' cause, few voted in favor of the motion. Many said they felt uncomfortable taking away the right of professors to penalize students for failing to attend class.

"I don't think you'd find many here who speak against the spirit of the event," said VP-academic Greg Moran. "But I think, in this case, a general endorsement by Senate implies an endorsement from the university as a whole and that's not something that should be done."

Thomas said the day would go ahead as planned.

"The final outcome here is crap," Thomas said. "Frankly I'm not surprised though because thinking differently is not something that is done often at this school."

According to Thomas, university administrators at Toronto, York, Windsor, Brock and Lakehead have already approved proposals similar to what he presented.

The Day of Action protest in London will include a march to Ontario Minister of Training, Colleges and Universities Dianne Cunningham office downtown.

In other Senates news:

A switch from grade points to overall average to determine progression requirements was approved, as was the creation of a full-time, vice-provost position, earning approximately $100,000 annually, to aid the VP-academic in planning, developing policy and faculty management.

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Copyright The Gazette 2001