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Timeline: Every moment related to the Board of Directors affair

It all started on Sept. 11.

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Graphic. Eli Ridder/TAP

This is a timeline for everything related to the IGNITE student union’s Board of Directors affair, a controversy that has shaken student politics at Humber College and the University of Guelph-Humber.

Ongoing coverage of the student union, campus in general and entertainment news can be found in the menu of The Avro Post.


August 14

This is the last date we know for sure that the IGNITE Governance webpage still invites students to attend Board of Directors meetings, thanks to a web archive.

The description reads: “Progress is made through open and honest conversation. You are invited to attend Board of Directors meetings.”

September 11

6:30 p.m. Our reporter Kristy Lam is turned away at the first Board of Directors meeting happening at Lakeshore Campus. Kristen Gavlan, an IGNITE staffer, tells her that the meetings are closed off now and we’ve should’ve known as it was on the website.

6:40 p.m. An immediate check revealed that there was no explicit text that said students were not allowed in, just that the “you are invited to attend” paragraph had been deleted.

7 p.m. A refresh of the Governance page reveals new text that states under the Ontario Corporations Act, only Board directors are have “a right” to attend the meetings. Students will now need permission to attend the meetings and minutes can only be accessed by request.

September 11

The first opinion piece, from a Guelph-Humber student, on the Board of Directors affair is published.

September 12

Jack Fisher, the University of Guelph’s student union president for the 2018-2019 term, criticizes IGNITE for the unprecedented move to cut off the meetings and minutes.

September 15

A second opinion piece comes from Michel Figueredo, a Lakeshore Campus student who also serves as the public relations officer for The Avro Post. His work is independent of the editor and journalist work.

September 24

The Avro Post’s Administrative Board releases an open letter calling on the elected Board directors to contact us and answer questions as we were asked not to contact them directly but via the executive director.

September 25

IGNITE sends out an invitation to campus media including The Avro Post, Humber Et Cetera and Humber News for a press conference on Oct. 4, a Friday, where the new by-laws will be explained. There will be limited time for questions.

September 27

Humber Et Cetera slams IGNITE in an editorial calling them out for an “issue with transparency”. The article cites the history of the student union and campus press, pointing out that it has never been this bad for transparency.

September 28

The Avro Post discovers that the Special Meeting of the Members has been shifted from Oct. 16 to “TBD” — to be determined on the Governance page.

The meeting, known as SMOM, happens on an annual basis and is the only time this fall that students would be allowed to attend and ask IGNITE executives and Board directors questions in a press conference-style gathering. Usually it is held in the student centre.

October 4

Everything changes. We learn the following at a press briefing:

  • IGNITE eventually wants to phase out student attendance at Board of Directors meetings and have it completely closed off
  • The current policy is that students can attend meetings but not journalists, the executive director says
  • IGNITE wants to only hire executives and not have them elected
  • The Board of Directors will be highlighted in the coming months as the top governing body of IGNITE
  • An improved relationship with the student press: Form re-opened online, monthly press briefings and faster communications

October 9

Reporters from The Avro Post stake out the assumed location of the IGNITE Board of Directors meeting to at least ask to enter.

A source tells The Avro Post that at a regular staff meeting at Lakeshore Campus, just hours after the Friday press briefing, IGNITE told staff to ignore campus media including The Avro Post, Humber Et Cetera and Humber News.

October 15

The Avro Post is cut off from IGNITE. Reporters were sent for a scheduled interview with President Monica Khosla but were then told by her and then-Acting Communications Director Unika Hypolite that there would be no interview or any contact with IGNITE until it got a faculty advisor.

October 29

IGNITE publicly confirms what reporters heard at the Oct. 4 press briefing but adds some context, explanation and introduces a three-tiered membership structure.

Future

Everything student politics can be found in our IGNITE section. ■

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IGNITE Board to meet again in a hidden location

The student union has hidden exact locations since September.

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File photo via Pexels.

IGNITE’s Board of Directors, made up of elected student representatives, will be meeting on Wednesday evening at the University of Guelph-Humber, according to a schedule posted earlier this year by the student union, but no exact location or time has been made public.

The Board meeting locations were removed by the student union in September after paid staff blocked a reporter from The Avro Post from entering that month’s gathering of directors, a meeting that later turned out to be of major significance.

The Avro Post attempted to find the meeting in October but was unsuccessful. According to the IGNITE bylaws, the directors have to hold a majority vote to kick a student from the meeting, including student journalists. They are also required to post the meetings publicly.

However, IGNITE has rules currently on its Governance webpage that instruct students, who are classified as members of the union, to reach out to the executive director to obtain access to the meetings, bending the rules of their own bylaws.

If the meeting is indeed held in the University of Guelph-Humber, the typical location for the Board to gather is the conference room found by the entrance doors to the university in the Atrium. ■

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‘This is Garbage’ exhibit launches Thursday

It will be revealed in Lakeshore Campus.

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Image via Humber Today.

Garbage will be at the centre of the “This is Garbage” exhibit reveal at Humber College Lakeshore Campus on Thursday.

Sanda Van Ruymbeke will speak on critical analysis and explore the perception and constructs related to discarding material the way society does.

Ruymbeke will look at what contribution can one’s artistic practice make to challenge cultural perceptions and re-imagine the possibilities and value of garbage.

Sandra and Constant Van Ruymeke collaborated for the exhibit, which will take place from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. in the Lakeshore Grounds Interpretive Centre.

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Don Cherry dropped by Sportsnet

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Don Cherry, who recently was under a lot of criticism following his poppy statement on Saturday night, was forced to step down from his long-running position on Hockey Night In Canada Monday afternoon.

Cherry, who was under fire since Saturday, was fired after his comments in which he talked about immigrants of Canada to support the troops and wear a poppy this Remembrance Day.

Cherry has had an illustrious career with Hockey Night in Canada spending 37 years a part of the business. Ron Maclean, who was Cherry’s co-host of Coaches Corner, issued his own apology during his Hometown Hockey segment yesterday evening during the Leafs-Blackhawks game.

Later Monday evening, Cherry had shared his thoughts on his firing, saying “I mean’t everything I said.”

Sportsnet had then released a lengthy statement Monday evening.

Cherry, who has been welcomed into Canadian homes for the last 37 years will not longer appear Saturday night for the first time.

What will come of Hockey Night in Canada following Cherry’s firing? Change is certainly coming and Saturday’s will no longer be the same with Ron and Don during the first intermission.

Tune in Saturday evening when the Pittsburgh Penguins host the Toronto Maple Leafs at 7 p.m. ■

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