Eli Ridder | Report
The Province-Wide March for Students’ Rights, organized by an alliance of pro-student groups, included hundreds of individuals marching on Queen’s Park and rallying in different cities across the province on Monday.
The Facebook page with the official events list showed at least 10,000 going or “interested” individuals — in a third and largest rally to date of students who are against Premier Doug Ford’s cuts to grant funding and optional student fees that threaten student unions.
IGNITE’s student government was in attendance and held several sign-making workshops for students that they encouraged to join them at the Toronto march — which is expecting some 7,000 students from campuses across the province.
At the University of Guelph, many attended the march there. The Central Student Association has held previous rallies on campus against the provincial changes to student life.
Student unions, including the University of Guelph’s CSA and the University of Guelph-Humber and Humber College’s IGNITE have railed against the optional student fees, saying it threatens their democratic government, clubs and some services.
A higher-up of post-secondary institutions file told The Avro Post last month that the Ontario government is “putting students first”, and giving those enrolled freedom with the “Student Choice Initiative” — which are optional student fees.
MPP David Piccini, parliamentary secretary for advanced skills and education, said that dental and health services are “essential” and therefore would remain funded. CSA Vice President Weiler said that the current fees allowed certain services to remain affordable.
The changes are set to come into play this August.
Coverage of the rallies to follow. Image from Pexels file.