Stop CECA from Raising Student Co-op Fees
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CECA proposes to raise student co-op fees to $729/term. The proposed fee increase (~2.8%) is 1.33x higher than national inflation and would be used exclusively to increase CECA's salary, despite:
- There being an ongoing 'deep dive' investigating the very need for such an increase. Co-op fees have already risen almost $100 since W14 and over 80% of co-op fees already go towards CECA salaries. Student representatives requested CECA to postpone any changes to co-op fees until after the deep dive is complete and its findings are discussed. This enables both students and CECA to more thoroughly assess the need for increasing co-op fees and to better understand how existing co-op fees are distributed among staff members. CECA denied the request. To increase student co-op fees while a deep dive investigating the very need for such a fee increase is still in progress undermines the integrity of the deep dive, violates the vital trust between students and the administration, and taints students' beliefs that the University of Waterloo is a proactive institution that strives to address student concerns.
- Almost none of the 20,000 students who would be affected were informed. Neither FEDS, nor the Co-op Student Council, nor the general student population were informed. Student representatives of the Co-op Education Council, which oversees and sets strategy guidelines for CECA, found out less than 24 hours before their meeting.
- Students are immensely dissatisfied by CECA's existing services and believe co-op fee increases should be used to benefit student services more than increasing CECA's salaries. This is particularly relevant given that the Director of Student & Faculty Relations earns over $160,000/year; yet the May 2017 Student Survey Regarding CECA showed that 73% of 240 respondents rated "How well do you feel student issues with co-op are addressed by CECA?" to be 1/5 or 2/5, on a 5-point scale (1/5 is the lowest, representing "poor", and 5/5 the highest, representing "excellent"). Although CECA made some adjustments to the co-op process, students have continued to voice their complaints and testimonies regarding CECA to their faculty societies, the student union, staff members, and peers. We do not believe CECA deserves a salary increase for fulfilling their job function of addressing student co-op concerns.
We, the students, protest CECA’s decision to increase co-op fees that would directly impact 20,000 students without having consulted any major student groups nor allowed the general public to contribute their opinions; and
We, the students, protest CECA for rushing to increase our co-op fees prior to the completion of the deep-dive analysis that investigates the need for, and impact of, such an increase; and
We, the students and financiers of CECA, expect that following the completion of the deep dive, its findings (including but not limited to CECA's expenditures, assets, revenues, and remuneration of administrative officials) shall be publicly released. And in the future, transparent budget information will be made publicly available to the student body on at least an annual basis, preferably a termly basis; and
We, the students, protest CECA’s lack of transparency in their decision to increase our co-op fees without informing the Federation of Students’ Council nor the general public; and
We, the students, hold CECA’s proposed fee increase to be unfair and warrants further discussion with the general student body; and
As of now, we, the students, stand united in protest against the proposal to increase student co-op fees.
For more information about CECA's proposed co-op fee raise, please visit: www.petitionCECA.com.
A draft version of this petition, written by the University of Waterloo's subreddit community (/r/uwaterloo) during exam season in December, is available for reading at https://docs.google.com/document/d/1UIjzKMXfxt_d_lEPe9iC3qbHxPYDbu8lGg4KMQ9eoEc/
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