U of O student federation passes Equity Policy, faces backlash

The Student Federation of the University of Ottawa (SFUO) faced opposition from Jewish student groups on campus over a proposed pro-Boycott, Divestment and Santions (BDS) policy at a Board of Administration meeting on Nov. 5. The Equity Policy, put forward by the SFUO’s vice-president (equity) Leila Moumouni-Tchouassi, proposed that the federation support a number of political campaigns. Calling the SFUO a “political organization,” the policy proposed seven clauses that would see the SFUO declare support for pro-choice groups, the BDS movement, fossil fuel and pipeline divestment, Black Lives Matter, Idle No More, anti-Islamophobia, and trans rights. According to the University of Ottawa (U of O)’s student newspaper The Fulcrum, Moumouni-Tchouassi said she had received death threats over the proposed policy. […]

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In-depth: religious freedom on Canadian campuses

The issue of religious freedom has come to the forefront in recent years, particularly on university campuses. Bill 62, a new Quebec law that bans receiving or providing public services while wearing the niqab, a face veil a minority of Muslim women wear, has some students reconsidering pursuing a post-secondary degree in the province. This comes on top of multiple instances of Islamophobia at universities, with anti-Muslim posters being put up at schools such as the ones found at Memorial University’s Newfoundland campus last month. In addition, an Ottawa teen was recently sentenced to three months in the youth justice system after vandalizing two synagogues, a Jewish prayer house, a mosque, and a church with racist slurs and white supremacist symbols […]

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