Student unions to vote on split from Canadian Federation of Students

Contentious measures on upcoming CFS-BC agenda also include condemnation of national executives

Several volatile motions are up for discussion at the upcoming semi-annual general meeting of the Canadian Federation of Students-British Columbia (CFS-BC) to take place from Aug. 13 to 16.

The motions in question could radically alter relations between student unions nationwide. The motions state that there is a “vast and growing divide in the political perspective and goals of the representatives of member local students’ unions.” Furthermore, the motions allege that “collective and individual disrespect, belittling, ad hominem attacks, and other intolerable interactions” were directed against B.C. members of the federation by members of the CFS national executive.

One of the motions goes so far as to call for beginning a review of the “process of eliminating congruent membership with the Canadian Federation of Students,” which would mean CFS-BC’s split from the national organization.

The motions were submitted by the executive committee of CFS-BC, according to CFS-BC coordinator Steven Beasley.

The B.C. executive committee also demanded the formal discipline and resignation of CFS national treasurer Anna Dubinski and national chairperson Bilan Arte, along with the firing of CFS employees Toby Whitfield and Jessica McCormick, and that the organization no longer associate with the two.

TRUSU, local 15 of CFS-BC, is sending a delegation for the semi-annual general meeting. It will consist of union president Melissa Gordon, vice-president external Amber Storvold, LGBTQ representative Julian Simpson, international representative Dana Prymak and director-at-large Eric Rankin.

Speaking for the delegation, Storvold said that TRUSU did not have an opinion on separation from CFS, but intended to use the AGM discussion to get more information on the subject. Concerning the allegations of verbal attacks in one of the motions, Storvold said that neither she nor anyone from TRUSU had experienced such attacks.