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The Engineering Student Society (ESS) would like to address the problematic motion proposed by the University of Victoria Students’ Society (UVSS) to lower the referenda quorum from 15% to 5%. Firstly, this change is undemocratic; it removes consultation from a large portion of students. If this passes, it would only require 2.5% of students to support any changes proposed by the UVSS Board of Directors (while an independent student would need to get 10% support for the change to even be considered by the UVSS). Furthermore, this motion fails to address the root cause of lower voter turnout during the COVID-19 pandemic: student apathy. While maintaining student engagement throughout the online semesters has been incredibly difficult, student groups now have the chance to rebuild student participation. It is imperative that the UVSS strives to rebuild the UVic community and strengthen student engagement. Thus, the ESS strongly encourages the UVSS to shift their goal towards addressing the root of the issue, rather than making it easier to bypass the apathy of the student body.
This Letter to the Editor was submitted by Abdul Abuelazm.