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THE NEWS FLOW

Oct. 20, 2009. Documents obtained by the Office of the Information & Privacy Commissioner of Ontario. Email exchanges between President Allan Rock and publisher of the Ottawa Citizen Jim Orban reveal how the University of Ottawa controls the media.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Mistreatment of Students, Unfair Practices and Systemic Racism at the University of Ottawa.


On Nov 12 2008, the Student Appeal Centre released their annual report to over 1 000 students. The report is titled "Mistreatment of Students, Unfair Practices and Systemic Racism at the University of Ottawa".

The report can be read here:
(English, Français)

The letter that appeared in the inboxes of over 1 000 students is posted here:
(English, Français)

In the body of the letter was written, "Our work at the Student Appeal Centre is very telling. We have learnt a lot about the way our institution operates and are a witness to the extent of the administration's power over student's lives. We propose that students unite in demanding more democratic and legitimate control of our campus."

The letter finished with an announcement for the creation of a documentary film on student mistreatment at the University of Ottawa, "Felt mistreated or belittled by the U of O administration? Feel you have been unfairly treated? Participate in an independent documentary and tell your story."

Visit or contact the Student Appeal Center for more information.


Related media:
Students Face Off With Administration (30 Oct 2008, The Fulcrum)
Allan Rock Unscripted (30 Oct 2008, The Fulcrum)
Gervais Déçue (27 Oct 2008, La Rotonde)
Does The Fulcrum Help Students? (23 Oct 2008, The Fulcrum)
SFUO Services Support Students (11 Sept 2008, The Fulcrum)
Guilty Until Proven Innocent/Présumé coupable jusqu’à preuve du contraire (25 Aug 2008, La Rotonde)
Student Appeal Centre Report Exposes Systematic Abuse at U of O (17 Dec 2007, UofO Watch)


28 comments:

Anonymous said...

This is just more Marc-related bullshit. Just what we all needed more of. Thanks. Now please go get help.

louisa said...

I would like to thank the Student appeal centre for putting together a comprehensive way for people who dont necessarily experience racism to see what other students are subjected to.
IF YOU ARE WILLING TO DISMISS RACISM SO EASILY, YOU SHOULD LOOK INTO THE CANADIAN CONSTITUTION OR THE INTERNATIONAL DECLARATION OF HUMAN RIGHTS.
it is our responsibility to show solidarity with our students and FIGHT RACISM IN OUR UNIVERSITY.

IM DOWN.

Anonymous said...

I don't think the Student Appeal Centre does an adequate job justifying the accusation of racism. They simply claim that since 70% of of those accused of academic fraud are visible minorities, the university is inherently racist.
They fail to prove why this statistic is caused by racism. The cause/effect relationship may not be that simple. Perhaps foreign students, many of whom are visible minorities, do not understand the accepted Canadian standard of work citing as well as those raised in Canada.
I'm not saying this is the cause and I'm not saying racism isn't a possiblility. I am presenting an alternate theory for the statistic and since the Appeals Centre did not bother to back up the conclusion of racism, my theory is as valid as theirs without further evidence. Racism is hard to prove and the accusation simply can't be trown around without proof.

Anonymous said...

Nothing in this ridiculous report suggests racism. It's just gross to level such an unsupported claim, the worst kind of mud to fling around so groundlessly.

This is utter crap. But pretty typical of the Rancourt crowd - they're just trying to find a new way to embarrass the university.

Zach Fouchard said...

The Appeal Centre is MORE THAN JUSTIFIED in claiming that our system of regulating academic fraud is punctuated by racist practices.

Negative comments on this matter are ignorant to what their privileged perspectives prevent them from seeing and understanding.

As an employee of the Student Appeal Centre, I am a witness to the systematic effects of an unjust university administration.

Those quick to defend the status quo - or, conversely, quick to attack individual students speaking out against their unfair treatment - must realize that racism is not simply a matter of 'intention'. Imagine an employer who does not hire women on staff. Do we really need to prove his intentions as misogynous, or does the fact that a social group is being ostracized suffice?

What backs up the report's claims of racism is the documented fact that the systematic effects of the university's current academic fraud policies are negative, both on a whole but more importantly towards specific socially racialized groups. Arab, Black and Asian men and women: These groups face more barriers within the appeal process, because the appeal process is organized in a way that makes it more burdensome for visible minorities.

Anonymous said...

Ridiculous.

This is just your bias.

Provide evidence, not libel.

Anonymous said...

Zach Fouchard
get a life, go play in traffic.

Anonymous said...

before making such accusations what are the percentage of all ethnicities making up for the entire university population?
or you just simply makes accusation based on nothing as usual.
My department is 75% made of foreign ethnicities. What is your number based on? or your simply under Seamus Wolfe and self indulge activist and feeding the fire. Because the people that took charge of our clubs and centers are activists that see to there own personnel interest and power.
We the campus population should put a stop to this once and for all.

Zach Fouchard said...

You can attack me all you want, but ultimately I'm helping students in conflict with the university administration. I don't care if you don't believe my testimony is adequate evidence or argument that others students are treated unfairly based on their culture, race and place of origin. The more you insult my person, the harder I will fight against people like you who protect the status quo, who are afraid of making "dangerous" statements and who will never know a moment of strife in their life!

You know what, I dare all of you wankers to rally together against the activist causes of our current Student Federation. I dare you to formally make the claim that I'm using the services of the Student Appeal Centre to serve a personal agenda. I'll promise you one thing, you're in for an uphill battle.

Anonymous said...

bwahahahahaha
someone as a pickle up his ass

Zach Fouchard said...

???

Anonymous said...

Zach, do not presume that because we don't believe your claims, we have not "known a moment of strife". Some of us have spent our lives fighting against real problems. A lot of us still are. I am glad you are doing this also, in your own area.

Please just keep in mind that you do NOT see anything like a representative sample of students at the conflict centre. This means that you should be very careful about throwing around accusations without EVIDENCE. I, for one, appreciate that you work on behalf of students. We need people to do this. But you are not serving students well at all if you accuse the institution of racism and there is none. This university, like nearly all others, is a bastion of free-thinking, independent, liberal-minded people who pretty much uniformly would oppose any form of racism. And that is that.

It's almost impossible to prove a negative. So, before throwing around such incendiary accusations, you HAVE to have evidence. Everyone hates racism and it's easy to make people want to fight against that, as they should. But it's also easy to hurt a lot of people with accusations that have no grounds.

Make sure there is something there before you start claiming that people who don't believe an accusation presented in the total absence of evidence are actually part of some conspiracy to defence a corrupt institution. It doesn't help your cause. There is no conspiracy. There is no evidence of racism (but if you can find some, I would certainly want to hear it). And Marc Kelly has not yet proven a credible source for anything he has blathered on about on this blog.

Zach Fouchard said...

The views of this blog aside, I'm trying to defend the claims of the Student Appeal Centre's 2008 annual report.

If it's not easy to prove a negative, how is it so easy to insists that I have offered no proof? MY TESTIMONY ATTESTS TO RACIST TENDENCIES WITHIN THE UNIVERSITY APPEAL PROCESS.

Do you honestly think that this institution (or any other institutions that make up our society) is completely free of injustice surrounding race? Do you think there aren't individuals in power who use their authority to pick and choose who wins an appeal and who loses an appeal, often based on unjust principles?

This is my last post and I'll end on this point: If the university is a bastion of liberal hope, how come students are visiting the Centre with stories of mistreatment and unfair practices?

And what are we going to do about?

Aren't we going to call out those in power to clean up their act?

And in doing so, are we going to whitewash our language to a politically correct level that is easily manipulated by those how wield power over us in the first place?

Anonymous said...

Without context, those statistics are meaningless. Perhaps there is a higher proportion of minorities making appeals in certain faculties because those faculties have a higher proportion of minorities than others.

The U of O's plagiarism policies are not unreasonable! Academic fraud is unacceptable and students who fail to meet the school's standards should not be coddled. I would not want to hire graduates from a university lenient on plagiarists.

I have no sympathy for the case study in which the student read "for the purposes of this
exercise, you are not expected to go beyond
the assigned materials," as "copy and paste material from the assigned materials".

Anonymous said...

Zach is long on rhetorical questions but short on evidence. You can't argue for institutional racism based on anything you have presented - you simply have no case. Your cause would be helped far more if you could provide something that sounds systemic.

You're coming up horribly short, given the awful accusations you are making. You should publicly withdraw these crazy statements until you can back them up. For the moment, it just looks like a modern-day witch hunt.

Niggertron said...

Bah, this is nothing but shit-slinging from people who don't know how to get over simple facts of life.

A little racism from time to time is perfectly healthy. After that, there's no racism nearly serious enough at uottawa to justify this sort of stir.

Anonymous said...

Zach, you should quit while you're ahead.

You don't want to pull a Marc Kelly.

Marc Kelly said...


On Nov 11 2008, the day after I sent the email, I received a phone call from a student, who got my number from the blog comments.

The student told me what I was doing was wrong. He even told me he was going to call Allan Rock to tell him what I was doing was wrong. It was simply wrong.

I told the student that the issue here, the real issue, is that I am being mistreated and discriminated against because of my political views.

I asked the student if he ever felt mistreated. I asked him if, perhaps, he ever got a bad grade, and disagreed with that grade.

He said he did.

He said he is taking a class with a professor who, one day, played a movie in class. The movie showed an Asian fellow in a relationship with a white girl. The professor said "that's disgusting".

The student told me in the class there were several visible minorities, some of which from interracial families, him included.

When the professor made that comment, none of the students said a word.

They were afraid to say anything.

Some of those students were already failing the class, or on the verge of failing, and they were afraid speaking out would guarantee their failure.

At the University of Ottawa, there are racist professors. There are many socially conscious professors, many wonderful professors. But there are also racist professors.

Racist professors damage students.

After sharing his story, the student told me he now understood my situation. And I told him he helped me understand a lot too.

Then I explained that there are things he can do about it. I told him many students in situations like his go to the Student Appeal Center. I told him that's where I went.

He said "Other students complain about racism?"

I told him the Student Appeal Centre was releasing a report the next day titled "Systemic Racism at the University of Ottawa".

He said "But I'm afraid if I say anything other profs will fail me."

I hope he finds the courage to speak out against his racist professor.

There are students on campus willing to fight alongside and support him.


The University of Ottawa has no policy to protect undergrads against discrimination, whether its racial, sexual, political, psychological, etc. The University of Ottawa has such a policy for Graduate Students, called Policy 110, but the University of Ottawa refuses to create such a policy for undergrads.

When I met with Dean of Science Andre Lalonde, regarding my discrimination by the Department of Physics for my political views and academic orientation, I pointed to a clause in Policy 110 that states:

"No member of the academic community shall be subject to discrimination by reason of [...] political [or] academic beliefs."

Dean Lalonde responded, "Policy 110 only applies to graduate students."

philippe said...

and if you're a graduate student, it still takes over 560 days to get your case resolved.

Anonymous said...

When MK finds that this one didn't work to destroy the university, I wonder what he'll try next.

No one believes you. Why should they? It's all about you, not racism, and you have not presented evidence that there is a problem.

Anonymous said...

“The most brilliant propagandist technique will yield no success unless one fundamental principle is borne in mind constantly - it must confine itself to a few points and repeat them over and over”

art student said...

While I could believe that systematic racism occurs on some level at the University of Ottawa, any accusations of it need to be conclusively proved, and not just attested to by questionably reliable witnesses; this is a serious charge and needs not be thrown lightly.

In regards to racist profs, I could believe that there might be isolated incidents, but I seriously doubt it's a widespread problem. Kick out the few who do it, and move on.

Marc Kelly, the faculty didn't discriminate against you because of your political beliefs, they objected to your stupid thesis. Every disagreement someone has with you isn't grounded in some latent hatred or wrongdoing on their part; as a scientist you should know that you can actually be dead wrong about something. You do not have a right to study whatever you want for credit, grow up.

Marc Kelly said...

art student said:
"Marc Kelly, the faculty didn't discriminate against you because of your political beliefs, they objected to your stupid thesis."

On Friday Nov 15, President of the Student Federation Dean Haldenby met with Chair of the Department of Physics Dr. Joos and DTPC Member Dr. Andre Longtin.

Before the meeting, Dr. Joos explicitly emphasized to Dean that I not be present. He said "No Marc Kelly".

I found out afterwards that the conversation began with something of this nature: "Dean, do you believe in the syllabus? Did you know Marc does not believe in the syllabus? Do you know Marc thinks everyone should get A+'s?"

Art student: The DTPC objected to my stupid thesis, yes, but they objected to my stupid thesis based on politically motivated reasons.

Please come to uOttawa Cinema Academica this Friday @ 7pm in McDonald Hall Auditorium. We will be discussing the political discrimination occurring at the University of Ottawa.

art student said...

Do you believe you would still have been kicked out had you handed in a real thesis?

I will not attend the Cinema, I have done so in the past and been very disappointed by the poor quality of the documentary films shown.

Anonymous said...

wait... I thought Marc Kelly did not submit any thesis at all. he was deregistered from the course just on the basis of the proposed topic of research, before the research was actually completed.

this has to be clarified in the discussion around this case.

Anonymous said...

Please stop sending emails through the listserv. I get enough spam emails about sex, I don't really need your wanking adding to that.

Anonymous said...

A response by a U of O law and human rights professor:

http://web5.uottawa.ca/admingov/documents/evaluation-report-sac-2008-annual-report.pdf

Socrates said...

I support the student appeal centre for SPEAKING UP and FIGHTING against this ridiculously slow machine that is the appeal process of the university of Ottawa.

Anonymous,

You better stay anonymous if you don't want to be trampled to death by the hundreds of students who have been victims of discrimination and racism and MISTREATMENT by their own administration.

You have NO idea. So back off.