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Federal debate at University of Guelph scrapped over PPC policies

A debate could not be held without PPC attendance.

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(L) Mark Paralovos via Twitter, (R) U of G via Wikimedia Commons.

The student government and a workers’ union at the University of Guelph decided on Tuesday to cancel a federal debate scheduled for the next day as provincial policy would have forced organizers to allow the local People’s Party of Canada candidate to attend.

The Central Student Association and CUPE 1334 said in a statement that they have the right to bar individuals from having a platform to speak on campus if allowing them would “jeopardize or compromise our anti-oppressive mandate and the safety of our students and workers.”

Based on the party’s platform, the two organizations found that the PPC policies “discriminate against people in the University of Guelph community” and thus contradict the CSA and CUPE’s work to “make an inclusive campus for all students and workers.”

However, due to freedom of speech rules mandated by the Progressive Conservative government earlier this year, the organizers could not hold a federal debate on the Guelph campus without allowing the local PPC candidate Mark Paralovos to participate.

If post-secondary institutions did not implement the free speech policies, they would be left vulnerable to funding cuts by the province. Therefore, to keep Paralovos off the debate stage, the unions cancelled the election event altogether.

Organizers told The Avro Post on Wednesday afternoon that Paralovos had threatened to arrive on campus with supporters to protest the debate if he was not invited. Jensen Williams, speaking on behalf of CUPE, said that they did not want violent protests similar to what occurred recently in Hamilton.

Jensen nearly five hours later told The Post that her claim that Paralovos threatened to protest if he was excluded from the debate was false, and that it was the University of Guelph administration who assumed there would be violence because of what occurred in Hamilton.

The decision to not invite Paralovos and subsequently shut down the debate so he would not protest was a non-partisan one, Williams stated. The spokeswoman pointed to the immigration, refugees and Canadian identity planks put forward on the People’s Party platform as attacking minorities represented by both the unions.

Requests for comment sent out to the provincial government and Paralovos have not yet received a response.


An election weeks away

The Federal Election Panel Discussion, which had over 100 Facebook profiles marked as “interested” or “going”, was planned as a way for students, who are part of the largest voting bloc, to get a sense of the parties available to them on Oct. 21, when the country will vote.

Originally invited was Liberal incumbent MP Lloyd Longfield, Green Party candidate Steve Dyck, Conservative Party candidate Dr. Ashish Sachan, New Democrat Aisha Jahangir and the Communist Party’s Juanita Burnett.

However, there was some pressure for Mark Paralovos, the People’s Party of Canada candidate, to be invited. Paralovos has previously struggled with receiving access to local debates and campaign events, but has since been welcomed to attend several after reporting by local media.

The move by the unions has resulted in backlash from Paralovos and his camp. In a tweet, the federal candidate implied that there could be legal action.

Paralovos asked on Twitter: “What I have to wonder is: do these two who have signed their names to this libellous and defamatory statement understand what they’ve done?”

“I guess we’ll find out soon enough,” he added, posting a link to a section of the Canadian criminal code dealing with libel, a law that covers the slander of individuals.

People’s Party leader, Maxime Bernier, has been accused of racism and discrimination, which he has denied. Specifically, there has been backlash to the part of the PPC platform calling for cutting immigration into Canada by over half, citing the economic impact of current levels.

Earlier this year, a visit by Bernier was made in secret after a location change due to what the PPC called safety concerns after anti-fascist activists planned a protest. As Bernier spoke to a private audience with Paralovos, a protest was held at city hall. ■

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2 Comments

2 Comments

  1. Gerry Attrick

    October 3, 2019 at 5:15 pm

    Aggressive fascists shut down a planned political speech by a speaker they disagree with, with the connivance of the university administration, and the tacit support of the police (government).

    Berlin 1930s? How about Ottawa 2010. (University of Ottawa)

  2. Gerry Attrick

    October 3, 2019 at 5:24 pm

    By implication, the union believes only “white people” can pursue and support Western values. Disgusting, rank racists and hypocrites.
    I am so disappointed by this attack on free speech on campus. I’m not a member of the PPC, but I certainly affirm its right and the right of all Elections Canada approved parties, to fully participate in our democracy. If you don’t agree with the PPC don’t vote for it and challenge it with reasoned peaceful debate, but don’t deplatform its candidates.

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Campus

Humber Galleries calling for artwork

Humber Galleries aims to inspire.

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File photo.

Humber Galleries is encouraging students and alumni to consider submitting artwork for their “Campus as a Canvas” initiative.

The facilitator has plans to repurpose “the function of our six display cases located around the Lakeshore and North Campuses as well as identifying pop-up spaces for the purpose of promoting work created by Humber students from all programs.”

Humber Galleries is driven to encourage collaboration between Humber programs and the Humber community as they enter the second semester of this initiative, according to a description

“The galleries are a place for everyone to learn and experiment through art from our many different perspectives. Art is polytechnic learning: both a way to gain practical skills for many intersecting trades, and a way to think through difficult ideas and possible futures,” says Kyla Ross, Humber Galleries Coordinator.

Humber Galleries is exploring ways to change their exhibition spaces by extending their scope of locations to include all Humber campuses. They hope to make the campuses appear more as canvases available for content by Humber students, faculty, staff, as well as alumni.

The locations they plan to use includes; L Space Gallery at the Humber Lakeshore campus, display cases across both Humber Lakeshore and Humber North campuses, and the large wall in the atrium of the Learning Resource Commons at Humber North campus.

Pop-up locations will also be appearing throughout both campuses as the semester continues.

Current Humber students and Humber alumni are encouraged to submit artwork that they have created at Humber College and if the artwork is selected, it will be put on display in one of the six display cases on campus.

For individuals interested, the application form found on Humber Galleries’ website is due by Nov. 24.

Humber Galleries will be hosting Student Info Sessions on Nov. 22 at Humber College North Campus in K107 from 12 p.m. to 1 p.m.  ■

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Campus

Humber Galleries calling for artwork

Humber Galleries hopes to inspire current students and alumni to submit artwork.

Published

on

Photo via Humber.ca.

Humber Galleries is encouraging students and alumni to consider submitting artwork for their “Campus as a Canvas” initiative.

The facilitator has plans to repurpose “the function of our six display cases located around the Lakeshore and North Campuses as well as identifying pop-up spaces for the purpose of promoting work created by Humber students from all programs.”

Graphic for the submissions.

Humber Galleries is driven to encourage collaboration between Humber programs and the Humber community as they enter the second semester of this initiative, according to a description.

“The galleries are a place for everyone to learn and experiment through art from our many different perspectives. Art is polytechnic learning: both a way to gain practical skills for many intersecting trades, and a way to think through difficult ideas and possible futures,” says Kyla Ross, Humber Galleries Coordinator.

Humber Galleries is exploring ways to change their exhibition spaces by extending their scope of locations to include all Humber campuses. They hope to make the campuses appear more as canvases available for content by Humber students, faculty, staff, as well as alumni.

The locations they plan to use includes; L Space Gallery at the Humber Lakeshore campus, display cases across both Humber Lakeshore and Humber North campuses, and the large wall in the atrium of the Learning Resource Commons at Humber North campus.

Pop-up locations will also be appearing throughout both campuses as the semester continues.

Current Humber students and Humber alumni are encouraged to submit artwork that they have created at Humber College and if the artwork is selected, it will be put on display in one of the six display cases on campus.

For individuals interested, the application form found on Humber Galleries’ website is due by Nov. 24.

Humber Galleries will be hosting Student Info Sessions on Nov. 22 at Humber College North Campus in K107 from 12 p.m. to 1 p.m.  ■

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Campus

Ambulance on campus for the 3rd time in 7 days

Police and ambulance services

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Cruisers in front of the LRC.

An ambulance and three Toronto Police vehicles were on campus on Wednesday afternoon for around one hour, marking at least the third time within seven days that emergency services have been spotted on campus.

It did not appear the ambulance was used during the hour or longer that it was parked in front of the Learning Resource Commons at the front of North Campus.

Two cruisers were parked in front, a police SUV and multiple campus security vehicles were in and out of the area.

The ambulance and police SUV departed campus at 3:40 p.m. while the first cruiser departed soon after. The final cruiser departed after 4 p.m. and no details were immediately available.

An ambulance was in front of the Learning Resource Commons a week ago as a male patient was carried out on a stretcher. On Sunday night, an ambulance was spotted in front of Residence T Building.

The Avro Post has reached out for details from Humber College. ■

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