RSU passes motions to make website user-friendly at July BoD meeting

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By Heidi Lee and Thea Gribilas

Motions were passed to implement changes to the Ryerson Students’ Union (RSU) website at the Board of Directors’ (BoD) meeting on July 29.

The motion to include directors’ emails on the website was moved by Faculty of Communication and Design director Olivia McLeod in an effort to increase communication and transparency. 

RSU president Siddhanth Satish said he intended to address this issue when giving updates on the RSU website later at the meeting, but he was willing to pass the motion anyway.

At the June BoD meeting, Satish said the RSU website was undergoing revisions to make it more friendly and accessible.  

Another motion was put forward by McLeod to improve the webpage for making health and dental insurance claims on the RSU’s website. 

The page should include a link that leads directly to Green Shield Canada’s online service sign-in page and a short summary of what the website is for, the motion stated. Green Shield Canada is the health and dental insurance provider for RSU members.

Vice-president operations Vaishali Vinayak suggested amending the motion to include a link provided by Gallivan Student Health and Wellness, an insurance broker that claimed they’ve worked with more than 30 student organizations in Canada. 

McLeod said her main concern about the website was that students would find it difficult to submit claims online, adding it took her a long time to find the link.

An amendment was made to the motion, asking to increase awareness of the capability of online claims by making the portal for online claims accessible—the link will now lead to “https://www.mystudentplan.ca/rsu/en/online-claims” instead of Green Shield Canada. 

Besides motions to improve the website, the board also passed a motion to improve security on campus by providing a list of suggestions to the school and advocating for better security upon students’ return to school.

Motion to release BoD dates one week prior: REMOVED

The motion was moved by McLeod so that directors could better plan their schedules. 

Satish pulled the motion out of order, alleging that RSU bylaws stated the date for BoD meetings should be given five business days in advance. He said putting forward a motion requesting a one-week notice would contradict the bylaw.

However, section 8.3 of the RSU bylaws states that notice of BoD meetings shall be communicated to directors at least five business days before the meeting takes place. Sharif Van Uum, Faculty of Arts director, said he didn’t receive the date of the July board meeting five business days prior. 

Satish said he might have made a mistake for this meeting and promised he would try his best next time, but insisted the motion be removed.

RSU to launch trial period with FundQi

RSU vice-president operations Vaishali Vinayak announced the RSU would be partnering with FundQi, a platform that allows students to acquire non-refundable scholarships and grants.

The trial period for the initiative will begin next week and will include 200 undergraduate students. Vinayak did not specify how these students would be chosen.

In March, Carleton University students voted with a 91.8 per cent majority to remove the $9.99 per semester FundQi ancillary fee, Carleton’s student newspaper The Charlatan previously reported.

It had been previously alleged by Matt Gagné, former president of the Carleton Academic Student Government, that FundQi was not being transparent as to how students were using the service nor was it forthcoming with information regarding how effective the service had been.

RSU working on discount for student textbooks

Vice-president education Tarman Kaur said she’s been working on collaborating with various bookstores in an attempt to get students discounts on their textbooks.

“My aim is to use the education grant approved by the board for this, so students are not only able to get a grant, but a discount throughout the year when purchasing school textbooks,” said Kaur.

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