Universities have, on occasion, intervened and exercised their power to withhold money from student unions acting against the wishes of their membership. Student union executives typically respond with a sad attempt to take the moral high ground, repeating variations of the following: "student unions should have autonomy over their own affairs." A novel idea: How about returning power to the students?
The Canadian Federation of Students (CFS), a national organization composed of campus student unions, purports to organize students on a "democratic, co-operative basis." When Guelph students wanted to hold a referendum to exit the CFS, they served the CFS with a petition asking for a referendum to be held to decertify. However, the CFS refused to schedule a referendum. Guelph's Central Student Association (CSA) took the CFS to court.
Whatever happens in Quebec happens in Quebec; it is beyond our control here in Ontario. What is alarming however, is that, as of this past weekend, Ontario students have begun to petition to bring the movement to their province. And all in the name of that often-used, deflated word "solidarity." This would be disastrous.