With the campaign season for the University of Toronto Students’ Union (UTSU) elections in full swing, one presidential candidate has been largely unseen and unknown.

To The Varsity’s knowledge, Joshua Hands, who is running independently for UTSU President, has not put up posters or campaigned on social media. He did not attend the Executive Debate that took place on March 8, and The Varsity’s attempts to reach out to Hands for an interview have also been unsuccessful.

In his candidate statement, Hands says that he would like to “work with local communities to organize inclusive campus wide events,” reallocate “funds to reduce student fees and provide students with a TTC Metropass,” and eliminate “segregation and competition among fellow
students and mentors.”

So far, the extent of Hands’ campaigning appears to be a post on U of T’s subreddit from March 8, where user joshuahands introduced himself and his platform.

“We all think that nothing will come from voting,” the post reads. “Only a marginal amount of students actually vote, but we all hate the student union and the community as it stands right now. So if we want things to change then lets [sic] participate!”

Last election, 9.7 per cent of eligible voters cast a ballot, a drop from 13 per cent in the election before that.

Hands’ Facebook account states that he is studying linguistics. He transferred to U of T from the University of Ottawa, where he has written and taken photographs at The Fulcrum, the campus’ English language newspaper.

One of Hands’ articles is an op-ed titled “What is university good for? Actually, a lot of things,” in which he encourages students to take advantage of campus resources to make the most out of their degrees.

Hands has not responded to repeated invitations to The Varsity’s presidential debate, scheduled for March 13 at 7:30.

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