Here are notes from the regular AMS Council meeting of January 27, 2021 (held virtually on Zoom):


Hong Kong: Council passed a motion condemning the deterioration of human rights in Hong Kong and calling for the release of unjustly detained activists there.  Councillor Mathew Ho, who brought the motion, noted that 12 activists have been held for 150 days, adding that statements in support of them have been released by the student societies at McGill and McMaster, with other statements expected from U of T and Waterloo.


UTILE: Council heard a presentation from UTILE, a Quebec organization dedicated to creating affordable housing for students, including co-op housing.  VP External Kalith Nanayakkara said he was looking to partner with UTILE on a survey to collect data to support advocacy and help understand how to move forward on the housing issue.


Interactive Sustainability Centre: The AMS Sustainability Projects Coordinator, Claire Ewing, told Council about plans for the new centre and for a Sustainability Corridor linking the Nest and the UBC Life Building.  The Centre will support programming and outreach, and the Corridor will include a sustainability-themed mural.  Estimated cost of the project is $26,000.


UBC’s Budget: Georgia Yee, AMS VP Academic & University Affairs, told Council about what her office is advocating for in the UBC budget process, including affordability, accessibility, anti-racism, and climate emergency implementation.  She added that there is an emphasis on cost mitigation to deal with revenue losses, and said that much of what the AMS is seeking has been introduced, so the focus is on making sure UBC continues such things as emergency bursaries.


Clubs: VP Administration Sylvester Mensah Jr. said Clubs Days is underway online, using Zoom and YouTube.  There are also plans for an orientation course for club executives to be hosted on UBC’s Canvas platform.


Staff and Events: Managing Director Keith Hester reported that the second virtual all-staff meeting had taken place.  He also noted that in the absence of events, the Events Department has been transitioning to making videos.


Speaker: Lawrence Liu, the chair of the HR Committee, said the committee had chosen a candidate to recommend for the position of Speaker of Council, but they had withdrawn their candidacy.  The committee will meet again on this.


Referenda: Council discussed whether to run any referendum questions during the upcoming election period, but the general sentiment was that turnout would probably be low, and there was nothing super urgent to put on the ballot.


Next meeting:

The next regular Council meeting will be held on February 11, 2021 (an unusual Thursday meeting).

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