The UMSU governance committee and a representative of the St. Paul’s College Students’ Association (SPCSA) each put forward a motion at UMSU’s board of directors meeting Jan. 26.
The motion from the governance committee proposed changes to UMSU’s governance and operations manual that would see the rules surrounding the eligibility of UMSU executives reworded.
Under the new wording, an executive must be an UMSU member for the entire duration of their term in office, and must be a student in any U of M faculty or school for at least one semester between September and April.
If an UMSU executive does not fulfil these rules, the executive must receive approval from the board of directors to keep their position.
The governance committee also made an amendment to the elections manual, stipulating that to run in an election, a person must be both an UMSU member and a student. The previous wording only specified that a candidate needed to be an UMSU member.
Both the amendment and motion were carried by the board of directors.
As for the second motion, the SPCSA is currently a non-voting member of the board of directors. A representative of the association filed a motion at the meeting to regain voting privileges. The motion is currently being reviewed by the governance committee.
When it came time for the executives to present their reports, UMSU president Jaron Rykiss opted not to read his at the UMSU board meeting. Other than this meeting, Rykiss has read his report at every board meeting since May. This past meeting’s president’s report was later posted online to UMSU’s website.
In the written report, Rykiss shared that he was in talks with other schools across Canada to learn more about how to improve the board of directors’ ability to remove an executive from their position if they are not doing their job. According to Rykiss, this will be presented to the governance committee once it is ready.
The report also discussed future meetings with the Manitoban to discuss a “sustainability concern” regarding paper waste, and the Arts Student Body Council (ASBC) to discuss issues regarding missing funds. He said he is working with ASBC leadership and U of M security services to ensure that the matter is handled properly.
He also outlined a meeting he had with the U of M strategic plan committee. Rykiss said that diversity, equity and inclusion, as well as the implementation of micro-credential programs at the university were discussed.
UMSU vice-president advocacy Victoria Romero did not attend the meeting, but her report was posted online as well.
Romero’s report discussed the implementation of menstrual product disposal bins in the men’s change room of the Active Living Centre. The report said the bins will be installed in the coming weeks.
“This is incredibly important as the assumption that only people using the female washroom will need these disposal bins is discriminatory in many ways,” Romero wrote.
Romero also reported that she is planning naloxone training dates for UMSU board members, associations and clubs. Naloxone is a drug that works to temporarily and rapidly reverse the effects of opioid overdoses.
UMSU vice-president finance and operations Brook Rivard shared that the UMSU audit has been approved, and will be posted online soon.