PrideWestern co-ordinator loses admin powers

USC VP-campus issues James Arthurs will oversee the rebuilding of the service

Tuesday, April 7th, 2009

Jamie East

In the wake of PrideWestern’s collapse, the service’s co-ordinator Jamie East appeared to get the boot earlier this week.

On Tuesday, East informed The Gazette he was let go from his position.

He also left a message on the PrideWestern message board announcing his removal, which he said was approved by University Students’ Council VP-campus issues James Arthurs.

“As of today (March 11, 2008),” the message read, “I, Jamie East, am no longer the PrideWestern co-ordinator. The USC Board of Directors, with help from ... Arthurs ... will be taking over administrative control of the service and overseeing its rebuilding.”

Initially, it was unclear why East would be let go.

According to USC bylaw one, “A commissioner or a co-ordinator may be removed from his or her position for unsatisfactory performance of [his or] her responsibilities by resolution of the board.”

Some of the Pride executives who resigned cited a lack of leadership as reason for their departure.

Yesterday however, East said he was not actually fired, but rather assumed the position of vice-chair of the service with Arthurs.

“James and I are now the vice-chairs of PrideWestern together,” he explained.

The former co-ordinator will have a hand in the restructuring of the service. Arthurs will oversee many key aspects of PrideWestern, such as its budget.

“It was a collective decision from the [board] that they would oversee PrideWestern for the rest of the term in consultation with the rest of the executive including Jamie,” Chelsea Cameron, PrideWestern director of finance and administration said. “But [East’s] administrative powers are terminated.”

Arthurs explained the reasoning behind East’s position change.

“PrideWestern makes decisions based on consensus ... with seven executives missing, they can’t make decisions,” he said. As such, Arthurs stepped in to fill PrideWestern’s decision-making body.

According to Arthurs, the service’s structure will not be any different.

“We’re not kicking anybody out,” he added. “Jamie has always reported to me.”

The service, in conjunction with the USC, now aims to rebuild while following through on its remaining programming, awareness initiatives and scheduled Pride Ball.

Since PrideWestern is currently over budget, East offered to waive his honorarium in order to hold the event.

“James didn’t feel comfortable having the Pride Ball without guaranteed funding,” East said.

East added he tried to do the best job he could this year, despite being in his final year of university and working two jobs.

“Whatever it takes to make the service positive and run efficiently in the future ... I’m all for it,” he said.

Cameron hopes PrideWestern can establish a clear mandate by the end of the year and iron out its role as a service.

“I’m hoping to run for co-ordinator,” she added. “After all this is said and done ... we won’t have to worry about this drama.”

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