Letter: CFS services unnecessary due to those offered by CUSA

It’s always nice when someone who has routinely been a disappointment finally decides to take interest in you.

I am, of course, referring to the representatives from the Canadian Federation of Students (CFS) who were kind enough to stop by the University Centre to provide pizza, hats—and reminders of why the decertification process must continue.

What I found most interesting about seeing the CFS in action is that it was the first time I had actually seen the organization playing an active role in the affairs of Carleton students.

With the mandatory annual $16 fee that we—a population of little less than 25,000 students—all pay to the CFS, totalling approximately $389,000 per year, there should be no need for the CFS to send representatives in a last-ditch lobbying effort to get us to stay. The services they provide would already be well-known and appreciated, right? After all, they give us great things like book-purchasing power, health and dental plans, and advocacy campaigns.

These are all things that are already offered without their support, but they would prefer to avoid mentioning that. Instead, the CFS would like us to continue paying our fees and funding their agenda without stopping to take notice of what exactly it is that we need them for.

Thanks to the Carleton University Students’ Association (CUSA)—you know, that other student association directly accountable to us, that we directly elect and we can all be actively involved in—we get more affordable prices for Carleton swag, we have one of the cheapest health and dental plans in the country, and we give support to a wide array of beneficial advocacy groups dealing with important issues like mental health and sexual harassment.

With the services provided by the CFS now obsolete, it makes no sense for Carleton students to remain members of an organization that, according to the CFS’ 2016 financial audit, budgets over $50,000 for the salaries of people we have never even heard of.

We also help maintain their office building on Somerset Street, accommodate guest speakers at their national conference, and fund their campaigning efforts—which includes the free pizza that they were kind enough to deliver as a reminder of their love.

The road to decertification is long, challenging, and technical—but it can be achieved.

Sign the petitions, visit the town halls, and say hello to the CFS representatives visiting Carleton—since you are paying for them to be here.

It’s time to take our school back. Let’s say CU later to the CFS.