Haven Books was doomed from the start. In March 2007, the Students’ Society paid approximately $40,000 for a consignment bookstore in a poor location, with an unmemorable name and a bad business model. They did so despite a Memorandum of Agreement with McGill that prevented SSMU from advertising the bookstore on campus, and a report from their auditing firm that showed Haven had lost about $95,000 in the previous year.
If there’s one thing the Students’ Society’s biannual General Assembly does a good job of, it’s helping to discredit – on both an intellectual and a practical level – direct democracy, or at least the twisted, substandard version we will once again be exposed to tomorrow afternoon.
Next year’s projected budget for McGill Athletics (see cover story), which includes a 67 per cent funding cut for Level II varsity sports, is a sign that the first round of funding cuts have begun at McGill, as the university attempts to reduce a projected $14-million deficit within the next year.
In a province with a severe physician shortage, it is somewhat surprising that only 35 per cent of foreign-trained doctors who pass the exams required to practice medicine in Quebec are granted residency positions. Last week, however, Quebec Health Minister Yves Bolduc took an important step in addressing this issue when he announced that the province will reserve 65 residency spots per year for foreign-trained doctors.
The latest round in the McGill administration’s ongoing feud with the Quebec government is much the same as the last. Predictable cries of “accessibility” are again pitted against claims of underfunding, as the sides face-off over a proposed tuition increase for McGill Master of Business Administration students.
It has been one week since an earthquake measuring 7.0 in magnitude struck near Port-au-Prince, Haiti, devastating the country’s infrastructure and sparking a humanitarian disaster. The Red Cross has confirmed that 50,000 people are dead, while Haitian officials say the death toll could be as high as 200,000.
The Association of McGill University Support Employees is now the official union of McGill’s non-academic casual workers, receiving accreditation from the Quebec Labour Board last month. An October mail-in vote of eligible employees resulted in an overwhelming 85 per cent of casual workers voting in favour of the union.