Letter to the prime minister
Dear Prime Minister Paul Martin,
Since you’re coming to campus, we thought we’d
taking this opportunity to write an open letter outlining some
of our concerns regarding post-secondary education.
As students and citizens of Canada, we demand post-secondary
education become a top priority for this government and the
Liberal Party. For far too long, band-aid solutions have been
applied to the gaping wounds of post-secondary education, which
have been caused by inadequate funding, more emphasis on research
as opposed to teaching and problems with Canada Student Loans.
Without a doubt, adequate funding is not provided to universities.
Money is dumped into research and buildings, but little is
allocated for maintenance, operating budgets and keeping class
sizes and tuition down.
At a lobby conference for the Canadian Alliance of Student
Associations, you made a commitment to envelope funding (money
specifically earmarked for post-secondary education), but that
promise has yet to be fulfilled.
Secondly, what good is post-secondary education if students
cannot afford it? The loan system for students has been chronically
problematic because the implementation methods have not been
altered or reassessed in years. Although post-secondary education
seems to be a rhetorical buzzword for many politicians, there
is seldom any direct action taken in this area.
The need for post-secondary education has become increasingly
important in society. Canadians across the board recognize
the importance of post-secondary education; it is as important
an issue as health care.
It is imperative that priorities are determined. It may be
safer to be ambiguous, but sitting on the fence on important
issues does little to encourage voters.
At the moment, it seems your only priority is distancing yourself
from the sponsorship scandal and any involvement you may have
had with it. Stop trying to sweep it under the carpet. If everything
was out in the open, we could move on. The sooner this issue
is dealt with, the sooner we can address the lack of attention
that has been given to post-secondary education.
As the elected leader of the Liberal Party and the un-elected
leader of this great country, it is also your duty to call
an election. You did not come into your position by winning
a general election; therefore, you should not stall on this
issue just to bide your time. The election should be called
as soon as possible.
Mr. Martin, you have done little to give students a reason
to vote for you. We’re looking forward to seeing if you