Editorial—Welcome, Welcome!

The votes are in, and your new AUSU Council has been elected!  Congratulations to those who won, and a definite thank you to everyone who ran.  The vote totals show that just under 400 votes were case for the winner, with almost all candidates receiving over 300 votes, meaning that the election was very close.  The total voter count has not been made available yet so we’re not sure how many students cast their vote, with so close an election, it really does show that your individual vote can make a difference.  You can find the full numbers at AUSU’s official statement of results.

In the end, 16 of the 19 candidates who initially put their names forward remained until the ballot, this is a fairly reasonable running rate, as it is quite common for AUSU elections to have one or two people drop out, especially as they realize that AUSU Council really does expect some work and activity from all elected members.

Five members of the previous council ran in this election, including two of the current executive committee. All five were re-elected and eight new members will be sitting alongside them.  This is a good result, in my mind, with a base of returning councillors to help the new ones learn about what AUSU has been doing and how it operates, it will hopefully make for a relatively smooth succession.  The new council has eight Albertans, three Ontarians, and two British Columbians, which will help to give a range of perspectives to council discussions.

And, of course, I need to give a thank you to the current AUSU councillors who chose not to run. Having been to so many council meetings, I  have to say I was fairly impressed with this past Council, not only for being able to move forward so smoothly on many issues, but also for how the regular members of Council were involved with the Council activities and discussions on policy.

The appeals period will last until March 12, 2020, and the old Council remains in place until mid-April, helping to bring the new group up to speed and wrapping up what they can of their own work.

Meanwhile, this week at The Voice Magazine, our feature article explores some of the struggles that the LGBTQ+ community has been dealing with in Alberta, and also some of the things that are going on here at AU to help.

Also, as is on everybody’s mind these days, we take our own look at COVID-19, colloquially known as coronavirus.  Is it something that Canadians need to worry about?  The jury may be out on that, but we’ll give you a bit of the background to help you make an informed decision about what level of precautions you might want to take.

Plus, Barb Godin gives us a short but thoughtful letter to her brother.  If you know Barb’s work already, you know the theme, but as she explained to me, this is a theme that we all experience, but many have trouble expressing.  And whether you’re there or not, it’s a good read that can’t help but bring up a reaction, the best kind of read.  And, of course, we also have our events, scholarships, reviews, thought-provoking articles, and more!  Enjoy the read!