By Douglas Cudmore
In case you missed the news, Kelli Campbell, RyeSAC’s VP education, received a large pay raise last December from the council’s Board of Directors. She pointed out that she was working 32 hours a week, yet she was only getting paid for 20. So now her extra hours of toil are recognized. She also won $3,600 more in wages. In October, VP administration Angelo DeLuca won the bump to full time status.
For a council as left-leaning as ours, I’m surprised these pay raises were requested. It sees Campbell and DeLuca have lost the volunteer heart of student activism. Involvement at Ryerson should be about more than getting a pay cheque. It should be about what you can contribute, and what you can get out of the school outside the classroom/ Punching the clock shouldn’t come into play — ask the leaders of Ryepride or RACA how many hours they’re putting into the school this week. And they aren’t getting paid for their efforts.
And groups like these are struggling to find enough cash to remain alive. RyeSAC can try to justify the extra $7,200 it’s blowing on executives, but their arguments are weak.
The arguments are also impotent when you take the modern world of work into account. I’m sorry, Campbell, if you had to work 12 unpaid hours a week. But many recent grads lucky enough to find jobs in the real world are working 60 to 70 hours a week on 40-hour salaries.
In any case, only the naive would go into a salaried position expecting to put in the hours prescribed on the contract. And I can’t believe Campbell and DeLuca, with their long histories in student government, would have moved into their executive posts without knowing the amount of work expected.
Which leads us to next week’s RyeSAC executive elections. Never mind that the folks on the campaign trail are unsure of what their status is if they win. Will they be full or part time workers? Are they expected to stay in class, or must they take a year off school? Those are questions RyeSAC should have answered clearly before students had to make the decision to run.
More troubling is the fact that Ryerson could have an executive made up of three full time workers and one student, or even a completely full-time staff. Many students complain about our government’s inaccessibility, this while the executive is supposed to be sitting in class with them. If the RyeSAC executive continues to be part-time, students can expect to know even less about what’s going on with their elected bosses.