WLUSU voting officially postponed
Due to the closure of Laurier’s Brantford campus, Wednesday’s Wilfrid Laurier University Students’ Union (WLUSU) election, originally scheduled to begin Wed., Feb. 2 at 8 a.m., will be postponed until Thurs., Feb. 3 at 8 a.m.
After much deliberation among the WLUSU board of directors (BOD), it was determined that the 36-hour voting period would remain in place and simply be pushed back to begin Thurs. morning instead. Voting will now close at 8 p.m. on Friday.
Although voting this year is available online in addition to on-campus polls, the closure of Brantford due to severe weather means that no voting can take place at either campus.
“The university policy states that in the event of a snow day no meetings or activities are to be held,” Walker explained, “With [the election] being an annual general meeting and an activity in terms of voting, we had to abide by that policy.”
“We can’t have one campus voting and another one not voting,” said BOD chair Kyle Hocking, justifying the cancellation on the Waterloo campus. “The constitution says that if situations justify we’re supposed to delay until March.”
At an emergency BOD meeting Tuesday night, Walker repeatedly stated that his interpretation of the school’s policy stated that the event would be postponed, with no changes to duration or location to avoid confusion or legal complications.
Walker was adamant that the voting period either remain 36 hours in length, or be delayed until March.
Director Greg Evans was the most vocally opposed to Walker’s interpretation and instead favoured a 24-hour period, stating that the candidates had gone through far too much “physical, mental, and emotional preparation” for the elections to end on Thursday night.”
WLUSU president and CEO Kyle Walker, director Ted Brown, and director Jon Pryce were among the most vocally in favour of keeping the 36-hour period.
“If people aren’t around on Friday, if candidates can’t make it to Wilf’s to hear their name announced, I don’t care,” Walker said during the meeting, “I really don’t.”
WLUSU has yet to determine if physical polling stations will be available on Friday, as polling locations require booking, and volunteers to assist with voting cannot be guaranteed availability.
Candidates and campaign teams have been advised that campaigning is still forbidden on Feb. 2.