By Shannon Higgins
Arts & Life Editor
If the Ryerson Students’ Union ever wants to clean up its act, they now have the blueprint to do it with.
The Eyeopener obtained Deloitte’s RSU audit, which outlines the accounting firm’s recommendations. The audit, paid by the university for $85,000, focused on governance and election policy and the health and dental plan.
Rewrite the election policy
Deloitte said the current electoral system is full of holes and prone to accusations of cheating. Basically, they said there is no consistency in the management and the chief returning officer (CRO) can make decisions subjectively and needs strict rules.
Switch to online ballots
Deloitte favoured electronic voting at traditional polling stations for efficiency and transparency. Use a system that can double check how many votes were cast against how many ballots they physically have.
Get candidates to sign contracts
To ensure the candidates know the rules and penalties. Deloitte said they need better communication between the CRO and the candidates. Also, people on slates need to officially register their teams.
Abolish director slates
Executives can still run on slates, but no more directors attached to teams. Deloitte said the slates have halted productivity and put personal politics above serving student interests. RSU director Dana Houssein said students who want to run alone would have a better chance of being elected if the slates were eliminated.
Cut people off
Deloitte suggests implementing term limits so people can’t rule the RSU forever. No more than three years of consecutive service and no more than five years in total.
Hire a General Manager
Deliotte said the GM should have no affiliations with CUPE, the Canadian Federation of Students or RSU. The GM needs to stay out of student politics.
Set-up checks and balances
Deloitte said the RSU has no accountability and nothing stopping the executive from abusing power. They need checks and balances written into their bylaws.
Clean up the books
Keep better records of the money you owe students for health and dental plan opt-out cheques.
RSU president-elect Jermaine Bagnall said the incoming board needs to discuss the recommendations before any changes are rushed through. He wants the RSU to do their own research before motions are passed.
“I’d be curious to talk to other student unions [who eliminated slates] to see how it affected their boards.” Bagnall said.
“Likely changes will wait until the next term.”