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What do people think of the Canadian Federation of Students? (CFS)
Good, bad, or other?
Hmm... bad. They've chosen an acronym that makes it confusing as to which group is who. Canadian Forest Service, Collegiate Funding Services, Chronic fatigue syndrome, Customer Financial Services. Perhaps they should all get together and let the synergy of integration work for the benefit of all.
... I'm sorry, what was the question?
I was wondering what people have heard out in the larger community about them.
The Kwantlen Student Association (KSA), UVic Grads and Simon Fraser Student Society (SFSS) are all holing a referendum on March 18, 19, and 20 for their membership to decide if they still want to remain affiliated with the CFS.www.cfstruth.cawww.wewantout.cawww.iamcfs.ca
Having paid student society fees to 5 different student societies in BC alone not including the CFS or BCFS, my opinion is that the local chapters are simply necessary evils. The fact that they're basically run by activists and a small minority of interest is only part of the problem. They are also by definition run by students who haven't had the experience running such an institution, and are prone to those activist students unfairly supporting their pet projects.
Despite these facts the student societies have done some good things for me, and all other students in the universities. Student Union Buildings are universally good (Ok, not quite universally good, but at least the SFU pub has a great view if nothing else). There are a number of services they offer that are best provided by other students, along with a structure for at least some kind of representation to the administration.
On the other hand, the CFS is just a giant waste of money. It always blew my mind why they existed, and it appeared to be one of the most wasteful institutions on the planet. It almost inspires me to re-register simply so I could try to help vote them out. They're as corrupt as any government in central Africa and as incompetent as a bowl full of goldfish trying to do calculus. Those fees would be as effectively spent with buying a gummi-bear factory and providing candy lunches for students every third week.
I wish the universities student societies the best of luck withdrawing, and I hope the CFS doesn't try to sue them with their own money like they did to the university in the Maritimes that attempted essentially the same thing.
Didn't really go the post-secondary route myself so I have no comment on the CFS per se, but aren't all organizations run by the activist few? I think you could level that accusation at the VUL too. I've always believed that many hands make for light work, and a diversity of voices is always welcome, but if people are apathetic, they get the leaders who aren't.
As to competency, we have a gov't run by a premier with no real world experience outside of real estate development and a real estate broker for a transportation minister. Come to think of it, I'm not sure if that's an argument for or against! :-)
Giant wastes of money and corruption are so legion in this world that I find it hard to get too worked up about the problems of First World university students.