Shared Perspectives: A Joint Publication on Campus Sexual Violence Prevention and Response
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We’re excited to finally share that OUSA, along with our national partners, has published Shared Perspectives: A Joint Publication on Campus Sexual Violence Prevention and Response! In January, we came together from coast to coast to begin this project and draw attention to the issue of sexual violence on university and college campuses. More importantly, we came together to support survivors, learn from each other, and bring forward solutions at both provincial and national levels. Over the last two years important legislative and policy changes have been made in Ontario, but there are gaps and challenges that remain. Students continue to experience sexual violence on their campuses and survivors face barriers in reporting and accessing support services. OUSA continues to advocate for more concrete commitment and action from the provincial government to tackle the current campus culture. In this publication we provide an environmental scan of what has been happening in our province.
My name is Catherine Dunne (but most people call me Cat), and I am beyond excited to be joining OUSA’s Home Office team for the summer as an Advocacy and Communications Intern!
Hi everyone! My name is Mackenzie Claggett and I am OUSA’s Research Intern for the summer!
This past semester I completed my Honours Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science at Western University. During my time at Western, I was fortunate enough to work with PhD students and professors whose mentorship inspired me to pursue research and policy development as a career. Specific areas of study that I became particularly interested in included political theory, feminist research, and sexuality studies. Ultimately, I hope to put this background to good use as I pursue a Juris Doctor degree at the University of Toronto this fall!
It’s that time of year again when university libraries are packed, study spaces on campuses are sparse, and students find every excuse in the book to procrastinate...it’s exam season! Although these stressful days have passed for me, I thought I’d share a couple of helpful tips that got me through exam season when I was an undergraduate student at Laurier.
The Ontario Undergraduate Student Alliance Teaching Excellence Award recognizes educators who excel at unlocking the potential of Ontario’s young people. Successfully engaging individuals in the learning experience depends on an instructor's ability to spark students' curiosity and desire to learn. It is our pleasure to give these remarkable professionals the recognition they deserve.
Happy March everyone!
As Reading Week concludes and the weather begins to warm up, OUSA is ready for Spring!
This month, we launched our OUSA Votes campaign to encourage students in Ontario to Pledge to Vote in the upcoming provincial election. Hundreds of students have already taken the pledge! Students have also been telling us about the issues that will be important to them in the election. They care about things like mental health, the cost of education, free textbooks, and experiential learning. Take a look at our election blog by visiting ousavotes.ca and follow along with the campaign with #StudentsVote.
All too often, issues associated with student housing are discussed in silos. The concerns that arise in one municipality are often not recognized as a part of a larger trend across Ontario. This can be attributed to the uniqueness of each individual community, and may be due to the fact that a solution for one may prove to be insufficient for others. This in turn greatly disadvantages student populations seeking short-term rental accommodations, resulting in issues such as illegal lease clauses, poor housing conditions, and inordinately high rental costs. The Ontario Undergraduate Student Alliance (OUSA) has identified the lack of municipal enforcement, and believes that the provincial government has a role to play in preventing persistent housing issues.
Throughout my time as a health sciences student at McMaster, I have seen the cost of my education rise at unaffordable rates. Over the past 5 years my tuition has increased by nearly $1,000 due to annual 3% increases. Furthermore, ancillary fees have risen even more drastically, with new services being approved through referenda, and other ancillary costs of education, such as textbooks and course materials, increasing each year.
In light of recent events, sexual violence prevention and response has been at the forefront of our national discussions, sparking the need for meaningful action and policy to address the persistence of sexual assault in our communities, workplaces, and schools. The conversation today is louder than ever, and rightly so, as it has been long overdue. The need to address and combat the pervasiveness of gender-based violence has been an ongoing challenge, and historically, student unions have played a critical role in addressing sexual violence on Canadian campuses. From efforts to combat rape culture and stigma to demanding adequate sexual violence policies on their campuses, students play a significant part in building a world free of sexual violence.