Sept. 16 - 22, 2010
No Tolerance for Hate Crimes
University responds totwo recent hate crimesin residence
niversity of GuelphPresident AlastairSummerlee distributeda mass email on Sept. 10 askingstudents to come together and“ensure that the University’s corebeliefs and ideals prevail over close-minded acts of intolerance.” Teemail was sent in response to twoseparate incidents of hate graﬃtithat occurred earlier on that week.According to the ‘Crime Bulletin’section on the U of G CampusCommunity Police website, one of the incidents occurred on Sept. 7and included racist graﬃti that was written in black magic marker atLennox Hall residence. Students are
he signs of fall areeverywhere - the ﬁrstfew colourful leaves on Winegard Walk, the fresh and pre-planned clothing on everyone (yes,even you, in your sweatpants), andthe lineups at the bookstore. Tecampus is a picture of young adults who have entered their academiccareers, many of whom have cometo this institution having already created some sort of vision of whothey want to become and what they want to accomplish. With a change of season anda start to another semester, thereis a sense of excitement ﬂoatingthroughout campus. But for some,the cool new breeze also brings with it many diﬀerent challenges.Bruno Mancini, Director of Counseling and Disability Services(CSD),ﬁrst joined the university in 1979,and just last week received theService Excellence Award for hiscontributions to the University of Guelph community. He conductsindividual and group therapy for the counseling unit of CSD.Mancini emphasized that studentsare a vulnerable demographic whenit comes to mental health issues. Troughout this past year, 1700students and about 1000 CSDbeing encouraged to come forward with any information regardingthese acts.Administrative oﬃcials are working with student leaders inthe residence community and theCentral Student Association (CSA)to launch an advertising campaign inresponse to the recent acts of hatred.Crime Stoppers and the U of GCampus Community Police are buta few of examples of those who canbe approached regarding this matter.Students should also be aware of therecently formed ‘Student Help andAdvocacy Centre’ (SHAC), whichprovides a variety of support servicesrelated to legal, ﬁnancial, academic,and human rights issues.Speaking about the recent acts of graﬃti on campus, SHAC HumanRights and Advocacy CoordinatorBrittany Brassard explained thatthere have always been students who oppose such crimes. Such actshave occurred before on campus butthey by no means reﬂect the views of most students.“From what I know, Guelphhas always had a large group of students that come together attimes like these to let people know that the University of Guelphcommunity will not put up withactions like these. I believe that asstudents at Guelph, what is knownto be one of the most progressiveuniversities in the nation, that we want to create a safe space for allstudents here,” said Brassard. Te U of G might be knownfor its level of tolerance but somestudents may wonder if such acts canbe detrimental to how the university is perceived. Brenda Whiteside,Associate Vice President for StudentAﬀairs, was asked how hate crimesaﬀect the reputation of the university.“Te sad reality is that therecontinues to be discrimination inthis world. What is important ishow an institution responds,” said Whiteside. “I think our visiblestance of tackling it head on, and nothiding from it or pretending it is nothappening, is a positive.”A tally of incidents related to hatecrimes and hate graﬃti that haveoccurred on campus do not seem tosignify a particular trend. Accordingto the annual police reports from2003 to 2008, between 2003 and2004 there were 16 reported hatecrimes, 17 between 2004 and 2005,11 between 2005 and 2006, 18between 2006 and 2007, and 14between 2007 and 2008. In certainincidents, multiple acts of graﬃti arebelieved to have been written by thesame group or individual. Te composition of the studentbody at Guelph is diverse. Inresponding to this issue, perhaps itis most important that those whofeel targeted from the crimes receiveimmediate support and an assurancethat such acts do not reﬂect the views of the greater student body.New students should be madeaware that they have several on-campus resources available for themto turn to, and that their residenceassistants are always there to talk in conﬁdence. And for those whofeel downright frustrated that thesecrimes continue to occur, SHACencourages you to do somethingabout it and have your voice heard.“Students can deﬁnitely helpprevent these kinds of acts in thefuture,” said Brassard. “Speak up! If someone around you sayssomething that you ﬁnd oﬀensive,let them know…Don’t stand forpeople polluting your environment with hate.”
Director of Counselling and Disability Services raises platform for mental health
Bruno Mancini winsService Excellence Award and chats about the importance of supporting students
JOANNA SULZYICHKIstudents registered for counseling, with a crossover percentage betweenboth groups of about 20-30%.Mancini explained why studentsmay ﬁnd themselves struggling tocope in diﬀerent areas of their lives.“One of the challenges of this agegroup is ﬁnding out who you are,”said Mancini. “And who you are isdependent on a number of things,in terms of your identity. Withthat, I mean in terms of what you want to do with your life, the kindof person you are in relationship toother people, ﬁnding your place interms of family, ﬁnding your sexualidentity, ﬁnding all of those kindsof answers to who you are, becausethat– ﬁnding out who you are, andthen moving in that direction – isreally, really important.”Mancini further explained thatas students are undergoing many diﬀerent changes while in university,they may ﬁnd themselves strugglingon an emotional level.“One of the major challenges in young adults is that between theages of around 18 and 25, thereare huge emotional changes takingplace, and that’s where you getan incredible degree of maturity starting to happen over time.” Whether you’re a ﬁrst year studentor gearing up for graduation, thereare always ways to decrease yourstress levels. One major way is tocut down on something we’re allgenerally guilty of - try and keepprocrastination to a minimum. Andif you have to procrastinate, try todo something that is beneﬁcialand productive. aking a break by completing a diﬀerent tangible task can help you get back on the righttrack with that essay or lab you may be putting oﬀ.“Even cleaning your roomhelps,” said Mancini. “It atleast puts together one part of your life. It gives you control.It’s manageable. When you’remanaging your anxiety throughthat, then you see the visibility of you getting something done.”As you go through this year, beaware of the resources available,like the exceptional staﬀ at CSD who are there to help you. Andin dealing with the challengesthat may come your way, alwaysremember to be patient with yourself. Don’t forget to accept andrespect who you are, your skills andimperfections, and your limitations,and let your work and resilience- both in and out of academics –carry you to the ﬁnish.
released, over $70,000 has beenspent in legal fees by the CSAin responding to this issue, andif taken to court more will beneeded from student fees.Along with tuition andservice fees, this fall studentsonce again paid the $7.31in student fees for the CFS.“Tis money will be held intrust, until decisions can bemade to determine what itcan be used for once the caseis resolved”, said Jackson. Tis year, the CSA mustorganize programs and events without the CFS resources.However, these campaigns willbe taken out of budget lines that were intended for other uses. Jackson will be holding a seriesof ReTink campaigns, whichtarget racism, sexism, and otherforms of oppression on campus.Compared to the fundingreceived by the CFS, she now only has $3,500 from the CSAAdvertising and Promotionsbudget to spend on her projects.She must also design, produce,and distribute her own postersand buttons, which werepreviously supplied by the CFSfor similar campaigns.But what worries her is that theobligations of CSA Executives arenot clearly deﬁned when it comesto organizing initiatives. Luckily,members of our current CSAare passionate about addressingoppression on campus, andhope to actually create a positiveimpact within the student body.
“And who you are is dependent on a number of things, interms of your identity. Withthat, I mean in terms of what you want to do with your life, the kind of person youare in relationship to other people, ﬁnding your place interms of family, ﬁnding your sexual identity, ﬁnding all of those kinds of answers to who you are.” – Bruno Mancini,Director of Counselling and Disability Services