Letter to the Editor: LSPIRG fee
We at Laurier Students’ Public Interest Research Group want to thank Erik Danudjaja for raising the important issues of student debt, inflated tuition fees and the financial barriers that students across Canada, and specifically at WLU, face in accessing post-secondary education. As university grads (and Laurier alumni!) we understand the pressures students face.
It is true that LSPIRG’s fee is completely voluntary and we love that our online system of opt-outs is easily accessible to students. Most undergrads choose not to opt-out of our funding once they realize how important the the many volunteer opportunities and services we provide are to their community.
While, yes, we work on important issues like cultural appropriation and developing more accountable spaces for students, we also support research by funding all of the Centre for Community Based Research Learning and Action’s SCRP internships, provide $24,000 in funding to student and community-led Research and Action Groups, and help with funding and guidance for projects from students, like celebrations of Black History Month.
We’ve collaborated on research projects that took on international students’ awareness of tenant rights and recently signed an Action Group looking to secure fair work and living wages.
Accountability and transparency are so important, even for a few dollars per semester, and we are always pursuing ways to be better. We want to find new ways we can support students and address issues of student poverty, like helping to fund the Student Food Bank. Here at LSPIRG, community always comes first.
-Laurier Students Public Interest Research Group (LSPIRG)