Welcome, below is past motions that have been passed at FASA by its membership. Aside you can also find more information about ASSÉ and its relationship to FASA.

Special General Meeting, April 1st

During the last Special General Meeting on April 1st, the members voted in favor of a motion that ask FASA to “take a position at this weekend’s ASSÉ congress to call on the ASSÉ executive to follow their members’ mandate and fully support the strike until members decide otherwise.”
FASA was present at the congress and defended the position taken by their members.
The congress voted in favor of a motion that condemns the actions of the Conseil Exécutif that are in contradiction with the structures of direct democracy.
The Conseil Executif resigned, but the congress decided to dismiss them instead.
We also voted, on April 1st, that “FASA call on the ASSÉ to take a position regarding repression by university and cegep administrations across Quebec and foremost at UQAM where students have been expelled, and that ASSÉ call for the continuation of the strike until the administrations back off.”
The congress voted in favor of the following motion :
“Be it resolved that ASSE take a position against political evictions at UQAM and, in the event, at any college or university.
Be it further resolved that ASSE organizes during the month of April a national demonstration in Montreal against arrests, expulsions and political repressions.
Be it resolved that ASSE invites its associations to position themselves against political expulsions on campus and support all efforts aimed at countering them.
Be it resolved that ASSE calls its associations currently on strike to consult its members on the renewal of the general strike until the end of the procedures of expulsions currently happening at UQAM.”

Motion passed at a Special General Meeting on March 12th

WHERE AS the student members of the Fine Arts Student Alliance (FASA), hereafter named “members” recognize the implications to their education imposed by austerity measures and the trend of privatization in the financial models of postsecondary education,
WHERE AS Concordia University has suffered more than 15.7 million dollars in budget cuts under the Liberal Government’s new Austerity Measures Act that imposes over 172 million dollars in cuts to education.
WHERE AS the Faculty of Fine Arts has suffered under these budget cuts in the form of reduction in quality of education due to increased class size and reduced TA positions, increased workload of employees and faculty, loss of “non¬critical” positions in Health Services, Custodial and Sustainability Positions as well as unknown loss to the department directly.
WHERE AS FASA members recognize the need for transparent and open discussions around austerity measures and budget cuts, alongside standing in solidarity with faculty, workers, and other student associations who suffer austerity measures and budget cuts within the realm of education.
WHERE AS FASA members acknowledge the right to education and the importance in taking steps including but not limited to strike mandates, open discussion, mediation and solidarity to resist budget cuts to their education.
WHERE AS FASA members feel it appropriate to deliberate upon adopting strike tactics to increase pressure on both the provincial government and Concordia university administration to block aforementioned austerity measures, following the lead of various other associations, alliances, and federations, including but not limited to SoPhiA, the SCPA, LAS, AFESH, ASSÉ, and the affinity group Comité Printemps 2015, and joining over 125 000 students province wide considering looking ahead to a general strike.
BE IT RESOLVED THAT the Fine Arts Student Alliance and its members vote in favor of two (2) one day (1 day) strikes effective between the hours of 12:01 AM on and ending at 11:59 PM on both March 23rd and April 2nd.
BE IT RESOLVED THAT as result of this mandate, all classes qualified under FASA within the effective dates will be disrupted. In the objective of cancelling classes and/or preventing classes to happen.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED THAT in voting in favour of striking, members emphatically support the Manifestation Nationale contre un autre budget d’austérité, organized by the Association pour une Solidarité Syndicale Étudiante (ASSÉ) on April 2nd.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED THAT if 30,000+ Quebec students and 2+ other student associations at Concordia university have declared a strike for April 2nd, then FASA’s strike mandate will renew and a special GA will be called for the evening of April 1st to deliberate upon the continuation of FASA’s undergraduate involvement in the strike movement.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED THAT FASA stand in solidarity with teacher facing academic measures for not giving classes according to FASA strike decision.

ASSÉ : Association pour une solidarité syndicale étudiante
Association for a student syndical solidarity

ASSÉ is a provincial student association regrouping university and CEGEP student associations across Québec for a total of 80 000 student members.
After a strongly supported affiliation campaign during the 2014 Winter semester, FASA members voted through referendum to join ASSÉ in March 2014 and have now been members for a full calendar year. This means that each Fine Arts student pays 1.50$ per semester as a membership fee in return for a large network of resources and solidarity.
FASA delegates attend each ASSÉ congress (approximately twice per semester) and bring forth the mandates voted on by FASA members during General Assemblies. FASA delegates do not act as representatives, but rather, in the spirit of direct democracy, only take positions on issues that have already been discussed and voted upon locally at FASA. Deliberation over important social and political issues occurs between the delegates, and campaigns are steered by the majority of student voices. FASA then has access to mobilization resources, new networks within the student movement, and support with local mobilizing efforts.
For example, during the 2014-2015 academic year, FASA took several positions at General Assemblies to engage in anti-austerity organizing, and to support workers in the public sector affected by severe governmental cuts. FASA then attended ASSÉ congress and brought forward the voice of Fine Arts students at Concordia, ultimately influencing the annual campaign at ASSÉ which was oriented around resisting austerity, most especially in the education sector.
The transition into working closely with ASSÉ was eased by a common functioning of our organisations, and several similar values and positions. The directly democratic structure of FASA—the use of General Assemblies as the highest decision making body–corresponds well with the way of working of our colleagues at the provincial level. As well, many important values expressed by Fine Arts students such as the importance of feminisms in the student movement, and the desire to make post-secondary education more accessible, are keystones of ASSÉ’s vision. However, while getting to know ASSÉ better over the past year, we have also run into a few conflicts and differing opinions, notably our views of inclusion and non-mixed spaces, and our occasional isolation as an English university. Despite occasional frustrations, we continue to believe that our diversity of opinions can constructively complexify debates at ASSÉ Congress and create an ultimately stronger movement.
To learn more about the student movement on a provincial level, FASA’s relationship with ASSÉ, or to become a delegate, please attend FASA’s next General Assembly!

What is Austerity?

Austerity refers to governmental cuts throughout the public sector with the goal of achieving a zero deficit budget. Austerity is a political approach that prioritizes a balanced budget over social welfare, using cuts to social programs to offset the lost revenue caused by years of tax breaks for corporations and wealthy citizens.
Austerity programs are targeted: those in more precarious socio-economic situations are more vulnerable to the cuts that weaken our social services network. Waves of cuts to staffing and materials in the health sector decrease our access to quality public healthcare. Massive cuts to public school boards across the province diminish the resources for the children in each classroom.
The Liberal Couillard government in Quebec has been engaged in an austerity program for the past year. This has included many waves of cuts in the public sector, especially towards healthcare and education.We can recall the former Education Minister Yves Boldcuc’s comment last Fall that public school children ‘will not die from having no new books in their libraries’ and Couillard’s proposition that each must tighten their belt, while continuing to give tax breaks to big oil and development companies who profit from our natural resources.
More specifically at Concordia, with 15.7 million in cuts for the Fall semester of 2014, the University has had to ask around 90 staff people across the university to take Voluntary Departure Packages in December 2014, only replacing about 20 of these key positions since. With limited resources, it is harder for the University to offer frontline services to students in need of support, while the quality of our academic experience also declines with cuts to Teaching Assistant positions and the increase in Limited Term Appointments for faculties, leading to less stability within departments.
From the closing of the NFB Cine-roboteque to compressions at the level of public galleries and museums to a loss of funding for independent cinema and television productions, the constant cuts to the culture industry continue to affect artists across Québec. A majority of us, living and working as artists, will know precarious or unstable employment for much of our careers in arts-culture-related domains. Although we will be university educated, we will rely on social service networks throughout our lives. The weakening of these is an attack on our safety.
Austerity is a political choice that demonstrates who and what the government cares about, it is not an economic necessity. By taking an anti-austerity stance at FASA, we hope to show that our care for the vulnerable, the marginalized and the underfunded is more important than the government’s care for profit.  We can demand more of our elected officials, and we can take to the streets to ensure that our social safety nets are preserved. We must continue to resist austerity and work towards accessible education, quality healthcare, and a just society for all.