OTTAWA, Sept. 7 /CNW Telbec/ - The Carleton University Graduate Students'
Association is concerned that the chair of the Board, David Dunn, has asked
student Board of Governors representatives to temper media statements about
the CUPE 2424 strike.
The Chair of the Board spoke this morning with both the GSA President
Oren Howlett and with CUSA President Shelley Melanson. To Howlett he expressed
concerns that some board members think Howlett should not be taking a position
on the ongoing strike of CUPE 2424 at Carleton University; Dunn further
expressed that this could place Howlett, also a board member, in a position of
In a similar conversation this morning with CUSA President and Board of
Governors member Shelley Melanson, the Chair of the board suggested that
Melanson was being given erroneous information about the negotiations. When
Melanson asked to know which information was in error, the Chair responded
that he did not want to get into a debate. The Chair subsequently asked
Melanson to consider stepping down.
The implication of the Board Chair's actions is to send a message to
students that outspoken advocates of student-centred policies and approaches
should not be members of the Board.
Debate is healthy and desirable in a democratic society and a democratic
university. Board members should be able to disagree with each other about how
the University is run.
Students are on the Board to bring a student perspective to the Board's
deliberations. This includes matters pertaining to Human Resources and
The GSA is concerned that the Board Chair's actions could be perceived as
political interference by the Board in the affairs of the independent student
unions at Carleton University.
The Carleton GSA will continue to support CUPE 2424 in its efforts to
ensure a fair and respectful agreement, as the best way to achieve a rapid end
to the strike.
For further information:
For further information: Oren Howlett, GSA President and Student Board
of Governors Representative, (613) 864-0980