Citing a lack of legal authority and bad faith from the Ford government, the Canadian Federation of Students–Ontario (CFS–O) has announced a legal challenge to the province’s Student Choice Initiative (SCI).
The SCI, announced in January as part of a broad set of changes to postsecondary funding, requires universities to provide an opt-out option for students on non-academic incidental fees. Postsecondary institutions must have this option implemented by the fall semester or face a possible reduction in funding.
According to The Varsity‘s calculations, a St. George student in the 2017–2018 academic year paid around $1,088.63 to $1,800.15 in incidental fees, depending on their college and program.
Last week @CFSON filed a challenge against the Student "Choice" Initiative. Today @kaylaweilerfox laid it down flat and simple. "If this government was truly for the students, they would respect our autonomy and repeal the Student Choice Initiative." @CFSFCEE #WeTheStudents pic.twitter.com/boizilA0M8
— nour alideeb (@nouralideeb) May 28, 2019
The University of Toronto Students’ Union, the University of Toronto Mississauga Students’ Union, the Scarborough Student Union, and the University of Toronto Graduate Students’ Union are all CFS–O members. The CFS is a national organization that aims to give a voice to the student movement.
The President of the York Federation of Students Fatima Babiker said at the announcement earlier today: “We have filed this legal challenge alongside the Canadian Federation of Students to show clear representation from students’ unions themselves who are opposed to this devastating policy.”
"WE are the students & what WE have been asking for is more funding for our education, better supports on campus for mental health, a provincial framework to address sexualized violence on campus, and a more effective voice in major decisions made about post-secondary education."
— CFS-Ontario (@CFSON) May 28, 2019
This story is developing, more to come.