Complaint Filed Against Vote Supporting New University Recreation Centre

The St. Denis Centre at the University of Windsor, seen on November 25, 2016. (Photo by Ricardo Veneza)

Current and former University of Windsor students are calling for a re-vote after the Graduate Students’ Society completed a referendum last week that approved a new $73-million recreation centre.

University alumnus Mohammad Akbar is heading a group that has filed a complaint to the GSS and the Chief Returning Officer, April Adams, alleging appropriate notice of the referendum wasn’t given.

He points to the notice being issued on November 9 — the same day the referendum campaign started — as the key concern for his group of students and alumni.

The St. Denis Centre at the University of Windsor, seen on November 25, 2016. (Photo by Ricardo Veneza)

The St. Denis Centre at the University of Windsor, seen on November 25, 2016. (Photo by Ricardo Veneza)

“Unfortunately, when bylaws and polices are violated you can only assume it’s due to negative intent, although I like to think I don’t think that was the case,” says Akbar.

The voting results announced on Friday showed 457 votes in favour of additional student fees to pay for the new sport and recreation centre while 290 voted against the proposal. There were 15 declined votes.

The GSS voted on the same issue a year ago which saw the project rejected.

Akbar says there are other methods his group will look to if the complaint isn’t acted on, but hopes it doesn’t get to that point.

“If we focus on the idea of natural justice then this complaint should absolutely be recognized because it’s crystal clear, there can’t really be any debate on the validity of the complaint,” says Akbar.

The University of Windsor Students’ Alliance and the Organization of Part Time University Students had already voted in favour of the project that would see the St. Denis centre renovated last year.

The new fees the GSS vote has backed are scheduled to kick in Fall 2019. Approval by the university’s board of directors is still needed.