Sunday, November 14, 2010
Rock squeezing democracy out of university Senate
The University of Ottawa has always and explicitly used the Code Morin rules of procedure in all its governing body and committee deliberations.
Allan Rock chairs the university Senate and was asked at the September 13, 2010, senate meeting by student senate member Martin Schoots-McAlpine what the rules of procedure were. Rock answered that there were no written rules and that it was based on practice or tradition.
This amounts to saying "what we do is the rule".
At the following Senate meeting, Rock was absent and the meeting was chaired by VP-Academic Francois Houle (of Ann Coulter fame). Houle explained to student senator Joseph Hickey that now the Chair (himself) had to resort to the Code Morin in order to stop Hickey from discussing the administration's agenda of the moment... (to reward its friends with honorary degrees without needing Senate approval).
Hickey reported this stunning logic of on/off rules in a letter to the student newspaper HERE.
These remarkable developments can also be followed on Joseph Hickey's new blog about his university Senate experiences:
And all Senate meetings are now filmed and posted by the university, thanks to student activism for transparency and accountability: LINK.