Two-horse race in Trinity-Spadina

Six very different people took the stage at Monday night’s All-Candidates Debate for the Trinity-Spadina riding. The auditorium was packed mostly with residents from the area, as students made up roughly a third.

In the 2006 election, Hart House hosted an all-candidates debate on campus. This year, the debate was cancelled when Chow said she wasn’t able to attend. The incumbent defended her absence, saying the debate would have taken place on Rosh Hashanah, and the proposed fallback date would have been on Eid, the last day of Ramadan.

At the Al Green Theatre Monday, Chow was notably confident in her surroundings. “Thank you for your support, neighbours!” she exclaimed in her three-minute introduction, setting a conversational tone.

The Liberal candidate, Christine Innes, was the only direct challenger of Olivia Chow, the NDP incumbent. But with six aspiring MPs in attendance—including a mumbling independent, Carlos Almedia, and awkward Libertarian Chester Brown, a graphic novelist best known for his autobiographical comics—there was plenty of partisan pandering to go around. Rounding out the role call were Stephen LaFrenie of the Green Party and Christine McGirr for the Conservatives.

Questions were varied and pertinent. Canada’s dependence on foreign oil was addressed early on, and immediately differentiated the candidates’ debate strategies. Chow was aggressive, comfortable in her position as advisor and friend to the community. Her desire to renegotiate NAFTA was met with restrained applause, though Chow did not mention how she would carry out such a feat in light of the changing U.S. political landscape.

Innes, who was more composed, offered a succinct breakdown of the Liberal Party’s Green Shift policy. Though she’s a first-time candidate, she spent years as campaign manager to her husband, 13-year MP Tony Ianno.

Every candidate claimed their party plans to increase scholarships and streamline the student loan process, in order to slow the trend of rising tuition costs. Innes, in particular, received huge applause when she argued that a federal Liberal government would work directly with Ontario’s Liberals to increase funding to post-secondary schools. “Students have a right to education!” she repeatedly said.

The evening went badly for the Conservative candidate, Christine McGirr. As she read repeatedly from prepared documents, cries of “Stop reading!” rang from the audience. McGirr did find support when she lambasted Chow for not being more publicly visible during the campaign, drawing cries of “Shame!” directed at Chow.

The Times They Are A-Changin’

The Varsity brings you snippets from last Saturday’s day-long Climate Change Conference, organized by Science for Peace, Students against Climate Change, and UTERN, which supports environmental groups on campus.

Climate change and society

“Why is nature regulated and degraded under capitalism?” asked York University professor Greg Albo. Politics today is dominated by neo-liberalism, he argued, and environment policy is thus regulated by market mechanisms.The lecture was at times dry and didactic–Albo was much more effective when he stopped reading from notes and just talked to the audience.

—Amanda Kwan

Campus corporatization

From research funding to public space, corporations have been increasingly woven into the physical and social fabric of educational institutions. Corporate involvement in university research and commercial funding of our buildings can negatively affect the type of research conducted, noted one participant: “It’s not a left-wing/right-wing issue. It’s about freedom of thought.”

Speakers Dr. Leslie Jermyn, professor emeritus John Valleau, and Angela Reigner of UTSU, urged students to question their role. They pointed out that corporations have the ability to dictate research topics and can suppress research that negatively affects their image, thwarting open discussion and debate–the purpose of universities.


Environmental racism and climate change

This discussion focused on the pervasive effects of climate change and the ways in which structural inequalities are reproduced at the physical and social level. Professor Cheryl Teelucksing from Ryseron said that discrimination against racialized minorities is manifested in all structural issues, including the environment.

Teelucksing gave the example of low-income areas, such as Regent Park, that are thought as “coloured spaces” have on-going environmental problems, like poor garbage management and bed bugs. Ben Powless, co-founder of the Canadian Youth Climate Coalition, discussed the ways in which climate change has a disproportionate impact on indigenous peoples and minority groups, who are often seen as hindrances to economic growth.

Climate justice, he said, seeks to promote equitable solutions to climate change by dismantling the roots of environmental racism. The guest speakers were eloquent and knowledgeable, raising important questions about the power relations in our society such as who decides our rights and who can pollute?


Building complacence

Danny Harvey advises you not to listen to U of T administrators when they say they’ve tried to ensure the buildings on campus are sustainable.

“We’ve had a building binge,” said Harvey, a U of T geography professor. “Every new building is a golden opportunity to do it right, and you only get it once.” Buildings and transport account for a third of carbon dioxide emissions, according to his Handbook on Low-Energy Buildings and District-Energy Systems.

While Harvey acknowledged U of T’s isolated efforts at sustainability, he says it has lacked a systematic and coordinated policy. He gave the example of the

brand new $100-million Centre for Cellular and Biomolecular Building. Its south side adorns a double-skin façade, which can facilitate passive ventilation. “But on the west façade, is your regular hermitically sealed glass façade with no shading. It’s going to overheat and require air-conditioning.”

—Naushad Ali Husein

An activist education

In Toxic Trespass, OISE prof Dorothy Goldin-Rosenberg explores how kids are affected by the “chemical soup” civilization lives in.

“Everybody is drinking tritium in their water. Tritium is a carcinogen, a mutagen,” said Rosenberg. Cancers are difficult to trace to their causes, because the effects of radiation are not immediate. But a large portion of the cancer problem is due to involuntary exposures to radiation like tritium,” she said. “We have to stop nuclear expansion in this province.”

Rosenberg’s interest is in education around the solutions and politics of social issues. She introduces her graduate course at OISE, TPS 1837, as an “activist kind of course,” where students not learn about and talk about the issues around them. “I want to hear how are they going to integrate these issues into their research, into their writing, into their communities.”


Algonquin protesters injured in clash with Quebec police

Algonquin residents of the Barrière Lake reserve have accused Quebec police of hurting a man and a little girl at a protest on Monday. The 50 community members were blockading highway 117, the only route to Abitibi, a region in northern Quebec.

Police fired tear gas to break up the demonstration, leaving a 3-yr-old girl hurt and a man hospitalized. Protesters claim the man was shot in the chest with a tear-gas canister.

Quebec provincial police spokesperson Melanie Larouche told the CBC that the police only acted when the protesters became violent.

“They took cement blocks and they broke them on the road, and they took the pieces of cement in their hands,” she said.

Michel Thusky, a spokesman for the demonstrators, maintained, speaking to the CBC, that police were not being provoked when they used tear gas.

The First Nations residents are protesting the federal and provincial government’s alleged interference in their internal affairs.

In 1991, the Algonquins signed a sustainable development and resource co-management agreement with the respective governments.

But the federal government ousted the Customary Chief and Council and replaced it with a leadership—rejected by the community—that opposed the agreement.

Protesters are demanding the appointment of an observer to oversee the selection of a new leadership elected by the people.

The highway was eventually opened, but Thusky said the community will continue to use pressure tactics until the provincial government agrees to meet with them.

Seeing Is Believing

Mark Ruffalo shares something in common with the rest of us who didn’t get an invite to Cannes. He too didn’t see the cut of Blindness that premiered there and had many critics ballyhooing about an intrusive voice-over narrator.

The film’s apologetic director, Fernando Merielles, explained during a roundtable interview at the Toronto International Film Festival that even he didn’t see the dreaded early cut until the actual premiere. The truly international co-production was still having post-production done in Canada, Brazil, and Japan, and it was rushed for opening night at Cannes.

Many of the film’s wrinkles have been ironed out, culminating in a harrowing allegory about a world gone blind. Ruffalo is excited (he’s actually bouncing in his seat) about the implications it has on the political chaos we’re currently facing. He points to gas prices, the economic crisis, the war in Iraq, and with ironic wit—a black presidential candidate.

Ruffalo is a political shaker, and he’s captivated by the idea that society is like a house of cards. All you need to do is remove one for everything to come crashing down. That’s the essence of Blindness.

“[Civilization] is a construct in a sense,” Ruffalo’s co-star Julianne Moore concurs. “People feel like it’s all in place for a reason—that it’s been there and there’s somebody in charge. But there isn’t. We’re the only ones in charge. We’re the ones that put these governments in order.”

“It’s like money. What we think is so valuable is just paper, and it’s paper with a so-called promise behind it. We’ve managed to agree that this amount of paper equals this amount of labour. There’s nothing behind it. Isn’t that a scary idea?”

Moore has been taken aback by the intense questions the film has inspired among journalists. “With some [junkets] you get lots of ‘What was it like to work with so and so?,’” she explains of her regular press duties. But with this film she has to describe how she would solve current global issues.

These challenging questions seem due course for such a complicated film, fraught with problems long before the Cannes premiere. The first issue to resolve was how to commit Nobel Laureate Jose Saramago’s novel to film, an inherently visual medium. Merielles acquits himself admirably with a bleached aesthetic that often looks more imagined than seen.

Then there were the actors, who had to pretend they couldn’t see. “I think they had a bigger challenge,” admits Moore, who managed to avoid the blindness boot camp, as her character has the benefit of retaining her sense of sight. Ruffalo recalls how tormenting it was to constantly forsake his own sight—to ignore what he sees and not get caught looking.

“I spent a lot of time reassuring them,” says Moore, who admits that like her character, she ended up a leader among the actors, guiding them along the way. “They were terrified of being blind!”

The puck drops here

Teams Expected To Do Well

Tampa Bay Lightning

Despite having the worst standings in away games last season, the Lightning demonstrated solid offense. With new faces like Ryan Malone and Gary Roberts in the line-up, fans will witness additional scoring alongside star forwards Vincent Lecavalier and Martin St. Louis. Both players are expected to give a full-out performance, despite the loss of line-mate Brad Richards.

Detroit Red Wings

The Red Hot Wings are expected to do what they do best—win. With phenomenal leader Nicklas Lidstrom and offensive powerhouse Pavel Datsyuk at the helm, these Wings won’t have any trouble flying to the top once again. Is this why Marian Hossa willingly decided to sign with the Stanley Cup Champions? You know what they say, “if you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em.”

Teams Expected to Fail

Toronto Maple Leafs

Autumn has arrived. Unfortunately, there will be more falling leaves this season than one would wish for, as the Toronto Maple Leafs get ready for what looks like another embarrassing season. With most of their “star” players gone and a captain nowhere to be found, it’s up to youngsters like Matt Stajan and Alex Steen to make a name for the team and lower the blood pressure of its nervous fans.

Florida Panthers

Florida is one team I can’t figure out, yet can’t forget. With the loss of their captain Olli Jokinen, Florida needs to build a solid foundation with their remaining players or face missing the playoffs for an eighth consecutive year. If the Panthers want to retain their jobs, it’s crucial for underrated players like Jay Bouwmeester and Nathan Horton to step up and illustrate their ability to reconstruct the team.

Teams to Watch

Washington Capitals

With the departure of starting netminder Olaf Kolzig, the Washington Capitals were deemed hopeless coming into the 2008-2009 season. However, the Capitals still boast a lot of promising talent. Reigning Hart Trophy winner Alexander Ovechkin—the heart and soul of the organization—will have another productive year with his constructive plays and impressive puck-handling abilities. The arrival of José Theodore to Washington adds a greater emphasis on goaltending and defence, enhancing the Capitals’ chances of making the playoffs.

St. Louis Blues

It’s possible that St. Louis is feeling anything but blue this season. The Blues are the perfect example of how great teams are overshadowed by media-crazed cities like New York and Toronto. St. Louis is full of thriving prospects that can ultimately make a difference in the way people view hockey in Missouri. With the presence of Paul Kariya and Brad Boyes, whose combined total reached 130 points last year, St. Louis should be optimistic about their offense. Even if they fail to make the playoffs, the Blues should have a solid record and a respectable season.

Teams that will Disappoint

Pittsburgh Penguins

After a stellar season last year, there’s no doubt that “young gun” Sydney Crosby will amaze with his speed and diligence. With 72 points in the 2007-08 season (24 goals), I wouldn’t be surprised if Crosby’s points soared to an ultimate high this year. Along with Crosby, Pittsburgh boasts the exceptional talent of forward Jordan Staal, whose strength and consistency will be a crucial factor to the Penguin’s success. Despite Pittsburgh’s gifted hopefuls, they are a struggling team whose spotlight is slowly fading. Don’t plan on witnessing a repeat of last year; disappointment is likely.

Ottawa Senators

The Senators are a risky and unpredictable team. In the Cup finals two years ago, the team still possesses the intimidating troika of Jason Spezza, Daniel Alfredsson, and Dany Heatley. Many see this team as a strong competitor because of the names on the roster. But to their detriment, the Senators look like a misguided group of players trying to construct a productive team on the ice. With Spezza, Alfredsson, Heatley, and Mike Fisher all in the game, one would expect to see quality results. Regrettably, Ottawa seems like an attractive team on paper, but futile on the ice.—MH

by Diana Helmy

Team to Watch

Chicago Blackhawks

The Blackhawks are going to be a force in the West with their star young players, last year’s Calder Trophy winner Patrick Kane, and new captain Jonathan Toews. With the acquisition of superstar defenceman Brian Campbell and veteran goaltender Cristobal Huet, Chicago has the potential to make it deep into the playoffs.

Team that will Disappoint

Colorado Avalanche

With the loss of Andrew Brunette and Peter Forsberg, it will be a long and difficult season for the Avalanche, as Colorado does not have an offensive powerhouse. Their newest goalie, Andrew Raycroft, had his confidence shot in Toronto, and it may take a while to get it back. The promising talent of young players like Paul Stastny and Wojtek Wolski will not be enough to save this team. Last year, the Avalanche finished in sixth place in the Western Conference. This year, look for a 10th or 11th place finish.

Leafs Prediction

It looks like the Leafs are in the hunt for John Tavares. It’s difficult to believe that Ron Wilson—a coach that is used to winning (206-134-45 with the San Jose Sharks)—will allow the Leafs put in anything but 110 per cent. With only one all-star player, Tomas Kaberle, and one possible top six forward, Nik Antropov, the rest of the team must step up. The upcoming Leafs season will be one of frustration and rebuilding with the loss of many key players in the off-season, including Mats Sundin, Darcy Tucker, Kyle Wellwood, Andrew Raycroft, and team pariah Brian “McKlutzy” McCabe. Look for Kaberle to take on a leadership role and Jason Blake to try and get out of his funk after a 40 goal-season. New defenceman Jeff Finger will have his work cut out for him in front of Vesa Toskala with Toronto’s lack of offensive depth. Newcomers Niklas Hagman, Mikhail Grabovski, Jamal Mayers, and Mike Van Ryn will be mediocre at best. The Maple Leafs should take their time in developing their next saviour, defenceman Luke Schenn.

Best in the East

Pittsburgh Penguins

Fresh from their Stanley Cup final loss, the Pittsburgh Penguins are back with a vengeance. Expect Sidney Crosby to take his post-season heartbreak and turn it into determination. Evgeni Malkin has had the summer to recover from choking during the Stanley Cup Finals, and should return to fine form. Expect both players to reach 100 points this season. With Marc-Andre Fleury in net, and offensive-defencemen Ryan Whitney and Sergei Gonchar, Pittsburgh will once again be the Eastern Conference champions.

Honourable Mention: Montreal Canadiens

The Habs may have lost Mark Streit, but they have gained hard-hitting Georges Laraque and goal-scoring left-wing Alex Tanguay to their already highly skilled line-up. It remains to be seen if Carey Price can handle the pressure of being a number one goaltender at 21 years old. Expect the Canadiens to finish in second place in the East.

Best in the West

Detroit Red Wings

With new edition Marian Hossa, the Red Wings will be unstoppable. Last year, Pavel Datsyuk, Henrik Zetterberg, and Marian Hossa had a whopping 255 points combined. With Norris Trophy winner Nicklas Lidstrom as well as Brian Rafalski and Niklas Kronwall on defence, opponents can only pray to get past the Red Wings.

Honourable Mention: San Jose Sharks

The Sharks know how to win having reached 107 points in 2006-2007 and 108 points in 2007-2008. They have added creative defenceman Dan Boyle to the line-up, as well as proven defenceman Rob Blake. If Patrick Marleau, Joe Pavelski, and Jonathan Cheechoo can improve over last year’s lackluster performance, and Joe Thornton and Evgeni Nabokov continue their stellar play, San Jose will be a force to be reckoned with.

Stanley Cup Prediction

While the Penguins will come out strong, Detroit will reclaim the Cup. No team has won two Stanley Cups in a row since Detroit won in 1996-1997 and 1997-1998.


Sidney Crosby (Pittsburgh)

Crosby had a rough 2007-2008 season, missing 29 games due to an ankle injury. Hopefully, he has learned from his heartbreaking loss in game six of the Stanley Cup finals, and is stronger because of it. If Crosby can stay injury free, he will be able to fend off Alexander Ovechkin and Evgeni Malkin in their quest to dominate the NHL.

Rookie of the Year

Steven Stamkos (Tampa Bay)

This year’s first-round draft pick is poised for superstardom. In 61 games with the Sarnia Sting last year, Stamkos had a whopping 105 points. If placed on a line with Vincent Lecavalier and Martin St-Louis, there is no doubt Stamkos will shine. While top defencemen Drew Doughty, Zach Bogosian, and Alex Pietrangelo will be solid rookies if kept in the NHL, they will not compare to Stamkos.

Best Off-Season Acquisition

Olli Jokinen (Phoenix)

After supposed conflicts with Florida Panthers coach Jacques Martin, Jokinen will have a fresh start with Phoenix. Jokinen, a first line centre, could regain his scoring touch. Jokinen’s leadership skills will help guide the young Phoenix team possibly to their first playoff spot since 2002.

Honorable Mention:

Marian Hossa (Detroit)

Hossa gave up bigger contracts to sign with the Detroit Red Wings for $7.45 million this year. The superstar right-winger will be a key player in the Red Wings’ hunt to reclaim the Stanley Cup.

Worst Off-Season Acquisition

Todd Bertuzzi (Calgary)

Bertuzzi’s on ice production has declined. He scored 11 points in 2006-2007, and 40 points in 2007-2008 down from the 71 points he scored with the Vancouver Canucks in 2005-2006. He ended the career of Steve Moore in 2004, never taking full responsibility for his actions. For $1.95 million, the Flames could have acquired a young centre with a clean record, not a thug past the prime of his career.

Players to Watch

  • Dion Phaneuf (Calgary)
  • Kyle Turris (Pheonix)
  • Carey Price (Montreal)
  • Patrice Bergeron (Boston)

Something new, something blue

The expression “all good things come to an end” summed up last year’s season for the Varsity men’s hockey team. For the first time in seven years, the team failed to win the Mid-East Division title and finished with a 13-13-0-2 record, five wins short of their prior season’s performance. While the Blues did manage to make the OUA playoffs, they were ousted by the Ottawa Gee-Gees in the final game of a three-game series.

The generally weak Mid-East has slowly improved over the years. Two seasons ago, the Blues finished with eighteen wins, while the combination of Queens, Royal Military College, and Ryerson had only seventeen.

“I agree that the division is getting stronger, but we just didn’t have a great season last year,” said Blues head coach Darren Lowe. “We ended with a .500 record and blew first place in the last game of the season against Ryerson in a shootout. We could have won our division.”

This season, the Blues will have to overcome the loss of key veteran players. Last year’s top two scorers, second team all-star Anthony Pallotta and first team all-star Mark Heatley, and veteran forwards, Julian Sarraino and Mark Wright, have graduated.

“When it comes to points and a leadership role, we are looking to our two remaining scoring leaders, Joe Rand and Ed Snetsinger,” Coach Lowe explained. “We just need the team to collectively put up the numbers.”

The loss of the veterans provides younger players with the opportunity to shine. “So far training camp has been interesting. It has been very competitive as we have had a large influx in first-year recruits and young walk-ons looking to gain a spot,” Coach Lowe said.

The surge of newcomers will add to an already youthful Blues team. Last year, the squad began the season with two first-year goaltenders and five first-year defencemen. With the addition of the new players, the team will be comprised of a primarily first and second-year forward core. With the absence of Pallotta and Heatley’s offensive power, these new forwards must collectively produce scoring opportunities in order to have any success this season.

Despite the fairly young team, Coach Lowe is not fazed about the team’s depth. “We are much deeper as a team as we […] now have four lines,” he said. “Last year, we were mainly a two line team with talent spread further through the lineup. This year, it’s much more balanced as our high end guys might not be as high end, but our lower end guys are definitely not considered low end.”

Two seasons ago, the Blues’ success was complimented by the outstanding play of OUA MVP goaltender Ryan Grinnell, who led the OUA with a goals-against average of 2.20 and a .920 save percentage. After Grinnell’s departure last season, the Blues went with two first-year goalies Andrew Martin and Russ Brownell. With Martin getting the bulk of the playing time, both goalies improved and continue to impress team management.

“Andrew was very good for us last year. He adapted to the game and style very well. Russ played well in the [York] tournament and continues to grow as a solid goaltender. Both are still young and still have plenty of time to progress and get better. They are certainly impressive,” Coach Lowe said.

Age and relative inexperience proved not to be a problem for the Blues this preseason. On Sept. 27 to 28, they participated in the York Invitational, finishing in second place, including a 6-0 blanking of the University of Ontario Institute of Technology. In the finals, the Blues lost to the York Lions 3-2 in a shootout after York capitalized on a 6-4 advantage in the closing seconds of the game, to send it into overtime.

“Overall our team chemistry has been very good. The 6-0 win was split in goal between Russ and Andrew, and our team played very well. We are very happy and impressed with how the tournament went,” Coach Lowe explained.

This week, the Blues ended their preseason with two games against Division-1 NCAA teams. The Blues beat the Michigan Tech Huskies 3-1, before falling to the Northern Michigan Wildcats 4-1 the next day.

“D-1 schools will be an experience for us,” Coach Lowe said prior to the games. “It is the ‘best hockey’ […] to compare yourself to. These games are just another opportunity for us to do some final evaluation and to get some team bonding.”

The youthful Blues will begin their season with back-to-back home games on Oct.10 and Oct. 11 against Guelph and Brock, respectively. Next, the Blues hit the road against UOIT, York, and Queen’s before returning home on Oct. 31 to play RMC.

Code of Conduct wars

After 13 U of T students were charged for violating the Code of Student Conduct this the summer, much criticism has surrounded the policy.

The Code of Conduct addresses non-academic conduct on matters involving university property, including unauthorized entry or presence on campus and the use of university facilities, equipment or services. When addressing safety, discrimination and sexual assault, the policy borrows some terms from the Ontario Human Rights Code and the Criminal Code.

While U of T officials maintain the Code is an essential document for the safety of the university community, student leaders claim the Code undermines academic freedoms and can be abused to silence dissent.

Students at universities across Ontario have taken issue with their school’s behaviour codes. This semester Ryerson officially adopted their behaviour code, Policy 61, much of which mirrors the content of U of T’s code. Student unions led a campaign against the code, and their leaders frequently cite the summer arrests at U of T as reasons to be particularly worried. Meanwhile, students at the U of Ottawa ran a successful campaign against an administration-authored student code. A committee is now underway to draw up a document with student input.

Critics say the Code doesn’t list in clear terms the rights that students are entitled to. Oriel Varga, an administrative assistant at the Association of Part-time Undergraduate Students, cited graduate student protests of January 2000 outside Hart House and the 2002 protests against the Code itself when it was invoked.

Varga was one of 14 protesters arrested on charges of forcefully detaining administrators during a March 20 sit-in protest at Simcoe Hall. U of T then pressed Code of Conduct charges on those of the 14 who were students. “The Code is often used to silence student activists,” said Varga, who called them “bogus charges.” Six months after charges were laid, the protesters have yet to receive full disclosure of evidence against them.

UTSU president Sandy Hudson is among four students threatened with Code of Conduct investigations for disrupting a meeting where GC voted to increase tuition fees. “Students are subject to different rules than the faculty and administration,” said Hudson. “The university acts as though they are our parents and we their children. Students are adults and not in need of a paternalistic administration.”

Graduate Students’ Union VP external Sara Suliman echoed Hudson’s sentiments. “The code is redundant with existing criminal codes and in fact places much higher emphasis on paternalistic and hypocritical policing of student behaviour, rather than protecting the students,” she said.

Jim Delaney, director of the office of the Vice-Provost, responded that a separate set of laws benefits the university by allowing an internal procedure of dealing with offences. External bodies aren’t brought in unless absolutely necessary, he said.

U of T was quick to refer students involved in a March 20 sit-in case to Toronto police, in addition to pressing Code of Conduct charges. Gabriela Rodriguez, one of the arrested, points out that simultaneous charges are prohibited under the Code. The university eventually suspended the charges.

“The Code, like in any university, gets interpreted in different ways,” said Delaney. He pointed to Section B.2 of the Code, which states no person can do anything that “obstructs any activity organized by the University of Toronto or by any of its divisions.”

“What that’s really saying is to help protect other people’s rights,” he said. “It also addresses obstructing and disrupting university activities, but also helps protect individuals with their own rights.”

Hudson does not feel protected by the Code. “When students voiced their opposition against the rising cost of education and the rising fees of the New College residence, the code was aggressively used to silence them.”

No on-campus voting at Scarborough campus

For students at U of T’s Scarborough campus, voting just got a little more complicated. This year, there are no polling stations on campus at UTSC.

Joseph Birungi, returning officer for the Pickering-Scarborough East riding, contends that there are enough polling stations close by for on-campus stations to be a non-issue. Birungi named an “across the street” voting location at 1400 Military Trail, more than half a kilometre away.

Though buses are available to transport students from residences to polling stations, interim president of the Scarborough Campus Students’ Union Zuhair Syed, said the extra trouble is still likely to discourage student turnout on election day. “We’re in the middle of our mid-term exams,” he said. “They’re not really willing to go out of their way and vote. It should be accessible at all times.”

Scarborough campus had a polling station in the last federal election in 2006, and is the only campus without one this year. The St. George campus had its voting stations cancelled in 2006, when the Liberal candidate for Trinity-Spadina, Tony Ianno, challenged the legality of special campus ballot stations. After outcry from student leaders, Elections Canada restored the three voting booths.