AMS winter referendum statements

The Journal provides this free space for parties on the winter referendum ballot. All statements are unedited.

Referendum statements

AMS Foodbank

The AMS FoodBank is a vital service. We are entirely student-run and provide both fresh and non-perishable food items to any Queen’s student in need, as well as providing information on dealing with low-income issues. As tuition continues to rise, we are helping more and more students achieve their basic needs and we need your support to continue doing so. We are currently funded by an opt-out student interest fee of $1.00 and are seeking to continue this fee through the current referendum.

For any student that is in need of food items, we are open Sunday, Tuesday and Thursday from 5:30-6:30pm. We are located in the basement of 272 Earl Street. All you need to do is present your student card; your comfort and confidentiality is assured. For more information about the AMS FoodBank, please visit our website, http://www.myams.org/foodbank/ or email us at foodbank@ams.queensu.ca.

As students become more responsible for the burden of paying for their education, it is imperative that services such as ours are available to students in need. Please ensure that we can continue to be of service to this campus by voting in favour of our $1.00 opt-out student interest fee.

Bus-It

Queen’s students presently enjoy the privileges of one of the best and most cost efficient transit programs in Canada, due to our high level of input into City transportation.

For the same fee as the previous year, $40.41, students can take unlimited rides on a system that gives them access to the entire greater Kingston Area for all twelve months of the year just by showing their student cards.

This year, the AMS has been successful in negotiating a number of significant improvements to the Bus-It Program. This includes the creation of the Student Circuit, to specifically allow students better access to cheap groceries, Goodlife, the LCBO and the downtown area from the ghetto itself. A direct route to the Cataraqui Centre has been created and the frequency of busses on the West Campus-Main Campus corridor and holiday shuttles to and from the VIA station have been increased. In spite of all these improvements, the fee is still less than one-tenth of the $528 per year students would pay without Bus-It!

The Bus-It service provides students environmentally friendly, cost effective and convenient access to shopping, entertainment, accommodation and involvement in community activities outside the immediate area of Queen’s. It is needed for students living and working on West Campus, as well as those living outside the main student housing area. The late-night shuttle is an important safety measure that eliminates the need for long, late-night walks. In addition, Bus-It provides access to jobs and volunteer opportunities in areas that would be very expensive to reach by taxi.

For less than the price of three taxi trips to and from the train station, Bus-It provides transportation throughout the year for all 14,700 AMS member students. To continue this valuable yet inexpensive service, VOTE YES TO BUS-IT ON FEBRUARY 7 & 8.

Canadian Unified Student Environmental Network

The Canadian Unified Student Environmental Network (CUSEN) is a student-funded environmental advocacy group, and has been active at Queen’s for over fourteen years. The mandate of CUSEN is to promote education and action on various environmental issues. Campaigns launched by CUSEN have involved research and organization in the form of petitions, lobbying, posters, presentations, speakers, workshops, resource gathering, networking and other events. Cooperatively with OPIRG Kingston, CUSEN funds and operates the Alternative Resource Library located in the Grey House. The ARL is a collection of hard-to-find material on a wide range of alternative topics. The library contains thousands of books, magazine subscriptions, resource files, videos and more.

CUSEN puts on speakers, events and workshops at Queen’s that deal with a variety of environmental issues. Some of these issues include deforestation, air and water pollution, global warming, and toxic and municipal waste. CUSEN has lobbied for endangered species legislation, an environmental action guide and improvements to Lands For Life (the Ontario government’s plan for our forests). CUSEN also supports a local community garden initiative.

Funding through the AMS $1.00 opt-outable student levy is essential for CUSEN to continue to serve the Queen’s and Kingston communities.

D.R.E.A.M. – Discover the Reality of Educating All Minds

Education is a birthright. People in developing countries are encouraged to improve their living conditions and make a better life for themselves. Unfortunately, all too often they are not provided with the means or tools to do so. DREAM, in partnership with Room to Read, is here to change that. We believe that widespread and lasting change begins from the foundation and rises upwards. Education instills literacy, responsibility, confidence, and maturity in children that will grow up to create a population that has the ability to change the future of their countries. Our vision can be stated simply: “World change starts with educated children.”

We are very excited about funding the advancement of five educational facilities in developing countries and we are passionate about the power of students helping students. By the end of the year, we will have raised money for the following projects through Room To Read: A school, a library, a computer lab, a girl’s lifetime education scholarship and published a book in a local language, at a total cost of $50,000. Vote YES for Dream’s opt-out fee, and help us continue developing educational facilities in third world countries.

If you wish to learn more about DREAM, visit our website, at www.queensdream.ca

The Empress

The Empress is a unique campus media source capturing the current affairs in South East Asia and Canada. As the only Chinese-English bilingual publication at Queen’s University, our mandate is to provide an active bilingual forum through which students may express their ideas, opinions and creativity while promoting the Chinese culture and literature in the university. also captures unique aspects of student life and the Asian culture here at Queen’s University. In addition, we act as a liaison between other cultural clubs on campus, informing students of upcoming activities and provide coverage on key events. Since our inception in 1993, we have established a 60¢ opt-out-able AMS student fee. This fee is our primary source of funding in producing our monthly publication. This fee is extremely important for us and will be vital to the continuation of The Empress for the next three years. Please support us as we continue to bring cultural diversity to the Queen’s community and provide students with up-to-date, informative, and entertaining stories. Friday Friends

Friday Friends is a club run by 10-15 volunteers and involves spending a few hours Friday evenings with teens and young adults with special needs. The club strives to provide a positive social setting for students who may or may not have means of participating in typical extra-curricular enrichment. Our aim is to help students grow and learn valuable social lessons; an often underestimated need in our society. Through organized activities with their peer group, outside of the usual settings of both home and classroom, students will have the opportunity to feel a part of something special. We feel it is of the utmost importance to form this bond because it allows not only the students, but also us at Queen’s as well, to grow and learn along side each other. This is the age where social interaction is so very much a part of life and if is not given the chance to develop and prosper it could prove detrimental both now and in the future. We truly believe that every person has a special gift to share with the world and with the right atmosphere and encouragement this group can be the place where it flourishes. If you have any questions regarding the program, please feel free to contact us at fridayfriends@gmail.com

HIV/AIDS Regional Services

HIV/AIDS Regional Services (HARS) is a non-profitable, charitable organization that has provided services to various communities within and around the Kingston area for over 18 years. We provide a number of confidential services for individuals: supportive counseling, information, referrals, support groups, volunteer support, practical assistance, advocacy, as well as an education, regional and prison program, needle and condom distribution, satellite offices and a comprehensive resource centre.

The Queen’s student body is one of the communities served and HARS has maintained collaborative, effective working relationships with several campus groups over the years: Queen’s Medical Outreach, Queen’s School of Nursing, AIDS Awareness Committees, Queen’s Legal Aid Services, Queen’s Sidewalk Sale, Sexual Health Resource Centre, the International Centre, Don’s Resource Fair, Women’s Studies, Black History Month Kingston, Queen’s Human Rights Office.

Queen’s and HARS have mutually benefited from numerous student volunteers and placement opportunities. Staff have assisted students doing HIV/AIDS research and course work. Over the last 3 years, the bulk of student fees has contributed to the continuation of education, prevention and volunteer programs at HIV/AIDS Regional Services. Health Canada only partially funds our education program, while the balance is funded through fundraising, the provincial Ministry of Health and student fees.

Students benefit not only from accessing comprehensive individual support services related to HIV/AIDS and Hep C, but also from quality HIV/AIDS education and prevention programs delivered through various campus venues throughout the academic year and on-site. We want to continue our partnership with Queen’s and urge you to give the HARS fee referendum question a resounding “YES”!

International Development Conference Committee

The International Development Conference Committee (IDCC) is a club on campus which annually presents a student run, three day conference on selected issues of international development. The purpose of this conference is to bring together students, academics, professionals and community members to discuss relevant and imperative global issues. Our goal, by opening dialogue, is for each of the attendees to gain insights into other perspectives by holding the conference as an interdisciplinary campus event. The aim of this conference is to highlight our interconnectedness; from the Queen’s community to the global world at large. Only when we are open to new concepts, ideas and even new doctrines, do we have the opportunity to bring stability to our world and create a sustainable future. We need to be driven and dynamic, while at the same time we need a common goal. We need our impacts on the world to be positive, and they need to be made without infringing on the livelihoods of others or the human spirit as a whole. By providing a forum in which bright, young students can converse with the academicians and professionals who are leaders in their fields, we can bring a higher level of awareness to local and global issues. Communication is paramount and it is through these interactions that we can begin to understand and participate effectively in the process of development. The introduction of an individual opt-out student activity fee will not only allow this conference to continue annually, but will also allow the committee to subsidize costs of the conference to ensure everyone has access to the event. It will also be used to attract the most influential speakers to discuss topics such as healthcare, technology, human rights, climate change, human trafficking, poverty, HIV/AIDS, the political economy, water and sustainable living.

The Kingston Lifeguard Club

The Kingston Lifeguard Club operates out of Queen’s University and consists of students who wish to improve their skills as lifeguards and lifesavers. The club sends teams to competitive lifesaving and lifeguarding competitions, including the University Championships, Provincial Championships and National Championships. The professional development activities include opportunities to improve skills in an open and friendly environment. We also promote lifesaving as a skill by offering certifications and re-certifications in most programs offered by the Lifesaving Society, including Standard First Aid, Automated External Defibrillator Provider and National Lifeguard Service. We are open to any and all students who wish to join, and have some fun improving their first aid and lifesaving skills. All monies spent on competitions and certifications are given to the Lifesaving Society of Canada, a charitable organization promoting lifesaving and drowning prevention in Canada.

Kingston Youth Shelter

The Kingston Youth Shelter strives to make a difference in the lives of homeless youth by offering them a safe and supportive emergency shelter that encourages their growth and provides them with access to community resources.

Whether it is a meal or a place to stay, we offer help in a safe environment that is free from drugs, alcohol and violence. We also provide young people with one - to - one counselling, crisis intervention and life skills training.

Our goal is to provide homeless youth between the ages of 16 and 24 with the opportunity to build the confidence and stability necessary to make positive lifestyle changes, move into and maintain housing and address their issues surrounding homelessness.

Each year, The Kingston Youth Shelter provides volunteer opportunities and practicum placements for Queen’s University students in such programs as Law, Nursing, Women’s Studies and many more. We appreciate all the support we receive from Queen’s University and through this are able to provide these opportunities.

OPIRG

The Ontario Public Interest Research Group (OPIRG) Kingston is a charitable, non-profit environmental and social justice organization. It was established in 1992 and incorporated in February of 1993. We’re in our thirteenth year of education, research and action in the public interest.

Each year, OPIRG events are related to the issues that students and community members choose deem important. Volunteers and staff work together to organize a range of speakers, film series, conferences, educational events, information tables, and other initiatives.

This September, the opt-outable $4 student levy provided support for OPIRG to organize several community and campus events, including workshops (anti-racism, Forum Theatre, bike repair, ’zine making), musical and film events (Min Sook Lee’s “El Contrato” and “Hogtown” screenings, Sarah Zammit’s “Corporate Lockdown”) and presentations (Roxanne Ortiz’s “Blood on the Border,” Straw Bale building, Earthships and Eco-houses, El Salvador Awareness, Government Advocacy by Democracy watch.) Working Groups form the heart of OPIRG. Volunteers with an interest in a particular issue or project work together to increase public awareness, educate themselves and others, attempt to influence government policy, and raise funds for particular projects. OPIRG works in solidarity with many community organizations in addition to being a member of various coalitions and joint projects.

With the Canadian Unified Students Environmental Network (CUSEN), OPIRG maintains an Alternative Resource Library. The Library houses thousands of hard-to-find books, vertical files, subscriptions to periodicals, videos, and taped speeches. This educational resource is available to all members of the community at no charge. You can search the library online through the OPIRG website (www.opirg.org).

OPIRG welcomes anyone and everyone to come out and learn more about social and environmental justice in our community, country, and world. Check us out in the Grey House (51 Bader Lane) or call 533-3189.

OXFAM

Queen’s OXFAM is a campus branch of OXFAM Canada. OXFAM is a non-governmental organization dedicated to alleviating poverty and inequality. The 2005-2006 year is characterized by four campaigns tackling a variety of issues addressing the previously stated fundamental values. The campaigns are: Make Trade Fair, Make Poverty History, Control Arms and No Sweat.

Make Trade Fair is working to address on-campus usage of Fair Trade products with an emphasis on the integration of Fair Trade into already existing structures (such as clubs). Another focal point is the development of new structures to improve access to Fair Trade goods on campus.

Make Poverty History helps facilitate a larger on-campus coalition of clubs with the goals of the MPH campaign.

No Sweat is working to inform students of issues surrounding garment workers in addition to providing alternatives to unethical garment purchase through their clothing drive and subsequent free-market.

Control Arms is currently engaged in the international Million Faces Campaign petitioning world leaders to endorse the Arms Trade Treaty which would effectively govern the arms trade and halt illegal arms acquisition.

Queen’s OXFAM meets weekly to develop the above campaigns in addition to participating in experiential-education activities at the first meeting of every month. For more information go to www.myams.org/oxfam or email oxfam@ams.queensu.ca

Queen’s Aero Design Team

The Queen’s Aero Design Team is a student-run team focused on the annual design and construction of an electric unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) for the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA)’s annual Design/Build/Fly competition. The team is composed of approximately 10 students who are completely responsible for all aspects of the project, from design and prototyping to fundraising and logistics. The Queen’s Aero Design Team has been the lone Canadian entrant into this competition and continues to be so again this year.

All students, regardless of their faculty, are invited and encouraged to join with no previous experience necessary in either engineering or aeronautics. We strive hard to ensure that all members of the team are able to participate to the extent that they are able in the design and construction of our competition aircraft and the veteran members of the team eagerly pass on

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