UBC business students vote against referendum calling upon them to fund sexual assault counselling
Sauder School of Business students at UBC have voted down an attempt for them to provide additional sex-abuse services on the Point Grey campus.
Only 30 percent of 815 participants approved of the idea of contributing $200,000 to UBC's counselling services, according to a statement on the Commerce Undergraduate Society website.
In September, UBC president Stephen Toope announced that the Commerce Undergraduate Society would make a "voluntary contribution" of $250,000 to fund counselling over a three-year period.
It was part of a broad response to sexual violence, which followed release of a fact-finding report into a FROSH week rape chant by commerce students.
The Commerce Undergraduate Society has already turned over $50,000 for this year and it supported donating the rest of the money.
However, this required the support of students in a referendum to contribute another $200,000 over the next two academic years.
“What we saw throughout the referendum process was an incredible interest from students in contributing to the creation of a safer, more supportive campus atmosphere, and a lot of different perspectives on how to do that in the most meaningful way possible,” Commerce Undergraduate Society president Sean Fleming said in the statement. “Students really wanted to participate more in the response, rather than simply contributing financial support, as they recognize this is a long term, community-wide issue and they wanted the response to reflect that.”
Meanwhile, the university announced last month that the UBC Sauder School of Business has launched several measures to promote greater appreciation for aboriginal people following a "Pocohantas" chant by students.
That includes working with the First Nations Studies Program to promote awareness and understanding of the effects of systemic racism and hosting events to raise students' consciousness about diversity, inclusivity, respect, and ethical leadership.