2022 AMS executive candidates ratified in January assembly

Rector election to take place in March 

SIC delivered student-police experience survey results.
Journal File Photo
On Jan. 20, AMS Assembly gathered to ratify a slate of Winter Referendum fees, validate the candidates running for AMS executive, as well as discuss clubs’ policy, return to in-person operations, and police presence on campus.
Assembly ratified the candidates running for the next AMS executive team: Eric Sikich, Presidential candidate, Tina Hu, Vice-Presidential (Operations candidate, and Callum Robertson, Vice-Presidential (University Affairs) candidate.
All three candidates spoke to their previous leadership experience on campus, particularly in ASUS, and their desire to continue to work for students.
“I really care about […] the way we connect with students. I think it’s really important for us to hold ourselves accountable,” Robertson said.
Laura Devenny, AMS Secretariat, announced that the 38th Rector election will be held in March, with voting scheduled for Mar. 20-21. 
She noted the previous Rector election in October was “unsuccessful” as the sole Rector candidate, Maya Morcos, removed her name from the ballot prior to voting.
The Rector sits on the Board of Trustees and the Senate and is a point of contact between students and the University. Devenny added that the AMS will put new measures in place to ensure the well-being of the individual elected. 
Samara Lijiam, Social Issues Commissioner, discussed the findings of the commission’s survey on student experiences with police on campus during 2021 Homecoming. 
The survey found students were fined and detained randomly and arbitrarily, fines were not communicated clearly, and police showed a pattern of vindictive and aggressive behaviour towards students. 
“Students [were not] allowed to call friends, lawyers, or parents while at the police station,” Lijiam said. 
“Students described being given fines or detained as punishment for asking questions, for not being deferential, or for not following instructions quickly enough.”
Lijiam said she will compose a report on these findings and meet with various groups to advocate recommendations for the future, particularly for 2022 Saint Patrick’s Day. 
In his report, AMS President Zaid Kasim said he’s been focused on answering students’ questions about remote learning and the possibility of a return to in-person class delivery. 
“It is looking very promising right now […] and it does seem like when we reach that re-assessment date of the 28th, we should be in a relatively good position, as per the conversations we’ve been in,” Kasim said.
“Given COVID-19 and how volatile this entire pandemic has been, obviously things can shift around, so it’s not
 a promise that things will be back, but as of right now, everyone is very hopeful.” 
Ryan Sieg, Vice-President (University Affairs), said he’ll be working with the University to see what Ontario’s announcement regarding loosening COVID-19 restrictions means for extracurricular activities on campus.
“So far all the messaging we’ve been receiving has been a hard and fast no to anything happening in advance of the academic start date towards the end of February,” he said. 
“We’ll be seeing if there are any changes to come.”
Other motions
Assembly passed a motion to establish a $122 mandatory fee for Bus-It, the program that provides both undergraduate and graduate students with an unlimited bus pass. 
The fee will secure a new contract with Kingston Transit for the next three years, re-instating the relationship that existed prior to the pandemic.  
Assembly also voted to establish a number of fees under the Social Issues Commission, all subject to individual opt out: a $2.00 fee for Mutual Aid Alliance, a $2.00 fee for Equity Granting Fund, and a $2.00 fee for Gender Affirming Assistant Program (GAAP).
A variety of club fees were approved to appear on the upcoming 2022 Winter Referendum, for students to vote on.
All these fees will be subject to  individual opt out.
The referendum will see motions to increase Telephone Aid Line Kingston’s fee from $0.75 to $1.00, increase Queen’s Backing Action on Climate Change (QBACC)’s fee from $0.75 to $1.50, establish a $0.69 fee for the Queen’s Rocket Engineering Team, establish a $0.70 fee for the Queen’s Space Engineering Team, establish a $0.50 fee for Queen’s Entrepreneurial Competition, and establish a $0.25 fee for Kingston Gets Active Ambassadors Club.
Assembly also voted to adopt proposed changes to the Club Policy, specifically regarding de-ratification. Under the new change, Assembly must reach a two-third vote to confirm the de-ratification of a club. The motion also prevents retroactive enforcement of AMS policies. 
The change responded to an action passed in December, which allowed the AMS to impose a two-year moratorium on clubs who tried to de-ratify to avoid completing AMS event sanctioning procedure—without an Assembly vote.
“De-ratification has to happen,” Rob Hughes, ASUS Senator, told Assembly. 
“But a two-year moratorium—the people who are ultimately paying the price for that are the student body, because  they aren’t given the opportunity to be in those clubs.”

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