CYZ’s platform will show you the money

Team will give back $3,000 of their combined salaries for every commitment not fulfilled

To Team CYZ, campaigning for AMS executive means being accountable, both morally and financially, to Queen’s students.

Presidential candidate Michael Ceci said many students feel there is a lack of incentive for the AMS executive to follow through on their platform promises.

“Where is the accountability? What we’ve done is recognize the fact that the AMS each year is a one year position,” he said. “What are ways to hold the student government accountable short of impeachment?” Ceci, ArtSci ’09, said that, if elected to office, Team CYZ will pay the AMS if they fail to reach theirobjectives.

“We’ve created six main commitments. For each one we don’t fulfill, we’ll give back a combined salary of $3,000. If we don’t fulfill all six, that’s $18,000 from our salaries that will go into a fund for student initiatives,” he said. “If we want that money, we’re going to have to work for it. We want to emphasize promise and commitment.”

Ceci said accountability also means providing students with regular progress updates.

“Another way to be held accountable is openness and full disclosure.”

One of the six commitments by Team CYZ is to work with the incoming principal to make environmental sustainability on campus a higher priority.

“Queen’s has an opportunity to take a leadership position on sustainability issues. A more ambitious goal we have is for the incoming principal to sign the University Presidents Climate Commitment and work with environmental student groups,” he said. “AMS itself needs to set the example.”

Ceci said this goal can be achieved through a variety of ways.

“Whether it’s a petition, meetings, or getting [student groups] in front of the Board of Trustees, we want to co-ordinate this with lots of groups.”

“By signing this commitment Queen’s would reduce its carbon footprint and reduce costs in the long-run.”

Adam Zabrodski, vice-president (university affairs) candidate, said the second commitment is to ensure student participation in decisions relating to Homecoming.

“We’ve discovered a lack of student representation in decision-making,” he said. “We want to consult with student groups—clubs, faculty societies, and students-at-large.”

Zabrodski, Sci ’09, said the next campaign promise is to develop a housing guide website where students can access information pertaining to renting and living in Kingston.

“We want to create a website and consolidate housing information. People can post information about their house,” he said. “If you’re subletting or on exchange, you still have access to the information.”

Ceci said Team CYZ wants Kingston Transit to create a free bus route from Queen’s campus to the train station and bus terminal on weekends.

“Students are already paying into Bus-It,” he said. “We make up a significant amount of the operating budget.”

Leslie Yun, vice-president (operations) candidate, said Team CYZ wants to work with Sodexho and AMS services to increase Halal and Kosher food options on campus.

Yun, ArtSci ’10, said the lack of food options is a barrier preventing diversity in Queen’s student body.

“We want more food options on campus for students that follow Halal and Kosher diets. A lot of students don’t come to Queen’s because we don’t have those options. We talked to Queen’s Halal and we have friends who are having a tough time with lack of food options.”

The last of the six campaign promises is to create a new position for supervising student clubs, Ceci said.

“We want to increase funding [to clubs] by 500 per cent. It is $5,000 currently. We also want to create a Clubs Manager.” Zabrodski said most students interact with the AMS through involvement in a club.

“Clubs are the best source of involvement for most students. Over 80 per cent of students are involved in some AMS club.”

The six campaign promises are by no means the only initiatives Team CYZ will undertake if elected, Ceci said. Since mid-November, the team has been researching possible initiatives they want to endorse.

“If you look at our platform, there’s a wide range of initiatives. All our other initiatives are also do-able. The Blueprint online goes through an overview of platform points. We have ideas specific to each commission and each service.”

“Something we think past teams have not done is their research. We did not want to run into that trap. This summer can be spent actually getting work done. It would be a 12-month term.

“We didn’t look just internally to the AMS. We looked to other universities and student unions to see what they do. This allowed us to have a more comprehensive view of how to do things.”

Zabrodski said as EngSoc vice-president (academic) he wants to see the AMS and faculty societies on better terms.

“We also want to see improved relations between the AMS and faculty societies. This past year, EngSoc was extremely frustrated. [EngSoc] was left in the dark with issues surrounding the Queen’s Centre,” he said. “There will be a written document outlining the relationship between AMS and faculty societies.”

To read Team CYZ’s full platform, go to votecyz.com

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