On Thursday, March 14, two students vandalized an art mural project that was part of the Capilano Students’ Union (CSU) Pride Month programming taking place outside the CSU Members Centre. The students returned shortly thereafter to make homophobic remarks toward several members of the CSU’s queer students collective and board of directors.
While we are working closely with the university to attempt to identify these students and to ensure that they are held accountable, this incident demonstrates that there is more work to be done in advocacy for the safety of LGBTQ2S+ students and community members at Capilano University. The CSU is committed to championing this work through campaigns and advocacy, as well as events celebrating the queer community including Pride Month, the Social Advocacy Faire, and more.
The CSU unequivocally condemns homophobia in all of its forms and encourages anyone who might have experienced harassment to report it to campus security.
Don’t let hate win — join us in celebrating queer history and culture as Pride Month continues through March. A full list of activities can be found at csu.bc.ca/pride.
Smoking Cessation – Butt Out in 2019
As Capilano University continues its dedication to wellbeing, we wanted to specifically assist members of the Capilano community in taking the steps to quit smoking. The health benefits of quitting smoking start moment you quit — you’ll notice the immediate health changes (both physiological and psychological) that being smoke-free can have on you and those around you. Quitting isn’t easy but you are not alone.
Below you will find resources that are available to you as members of the Capilano community or as a resident of British Columbia to aid you to quit smoking.
BC Smoking Cessation Program
The Government of British Columbia has created this program to cover costs of products that make it easier to quit smoking. Such products covered are nicotine replacement therapy products and smoking cessation prescriptions drugs. For additional information on how to get started please click here. You can also view frequently asked questions by clicking here.
QuitNow is a free customized program offered by the Government of BC delivered by the BC Lung Association. This program provides free one-on-one advice and guidance to help you to quit smoking and stay smoke-free. When you join QuitNow you will have access to a Quit Coach, online resources, an online community to help you stay on track.
To learn more about this program please click here.
CSU Health & Dental Plan
Students enrolled in the CSU health & dental plan may access the psychology and naturopathic coverage for support, or claim medication that is on the BC Pharmacare Formulary. Full details can be found here.
And yes, this is a click-baity post title
By Christopher Girodat, executive director
It’s #BellLetsTalk day, and everyone on the North Vancouver campus of Capilano University (a place I feel very privileged to work at) is talking about mental health. We’re talking about mental health broadly, in terms of this national day of dialogue, but also about the mental health of post-secondary students in particular – partnering with the Canadian Alliance of Student Associations on the Students Let’s Act campaign.
I want to share some thoughts about “mental health days.” As executive director at the Capilano Students’ Union, I lead a team of 15 or so incredible people. I’ve been managing people for more than 10 years now in a couple of capacities, and there’s something about how people (workers included) approach “mental health days” that I think needs to be called out for discussion. (These are my personal thoughts, and don’t necessarily reflect the views of the Capilano Students’ Union, just to be clear.)
When someone calls in sick because of their physical health, things always seem super straightforward. They call or email, say something like “I’ve got a cold, sorry, not going to make it in,” and then everyone accepts the explanation and moves on with the day. If someone has a cold, a migraine, hurt an ankle, or whatever other physical maladies might have befallen them, it always seems super straightforward. Workers (at least when there’s job security and paid sick leave) seem comfortable enough doing it.
When it comes to mental health, though, it seems to be a different story.
When someone needs to take a day away from work because of their mental health, it’s rare that the explanation is so straightforward. Because of the stigma around mental health, I’ve found that the explanation is usually super elaborate, and includes way more personal information than an employee would share about a physical ailment. Let’s be clear, this practice is a real-life demonstration of stigma surrounding mental health.
Some workplaces use the term “mental health days” to address this sort of thing. There’s “sick days,” and then “mental health days.” Why is that? Why are we pretending that a tough mental health day should be treated any differently, from a workplace perspective, than we would treat tough physical health days? When’s the last time someone said “I think I’m going to need to stay home, I need a physical health day”? Answer: They wouldn’t say that, they would just – validly – say “Sorry, I’m sick today.”
Mental health is important. Folks who decide they need to stay home because their mental health won’t to allow them to work, that feeling – and their determination of whether they’re fit to report to work – is valid. It’s correct. They deserve to be able to just “call in sick,” treated in every respect as though they were calling in sick for any physical reason out there, without doing some sort of special “mental health day” dance, with an essay to their employer justifying why their mental health should count for something.
My ask to employers, managers, and supervisors out there:
Acknowledge that physical and mental health are both just “health,” and adjust your leave policies so that you treat sick leave the same for both. Don’t inadvertently add to the stigma toward mental health by making it seem different. Also, make sure that you actually provide enough leave for your team members to take care of themselves.
My ask to workers:
Next time you need a day off for your mental health, just call in sick like you would if you had a cold. Resist the temptation to justify your health needs, in a way that you would never do with a physical ailment. (Obviously, consider your personal circumstances before you do that – if you’re precariously employed, or you have a garbage workplace, I absolutely understand that you might not be in a position to do this.)
The idea here isn’t to stop talking about mental health – on the contrary. We need to be talking about mental health as a legitimate health issue that is on par with physical health. If we all do our part to reframe the dialogue on mental health as a reason to take time off, then we can make some serious progress breaking down the stigma that folks still face when voicing and acting upon their mental health experiences.
Here are the highlights from the December 14th meeting of the CSU board of directors.
The board express its support for the Dundarave-Phibbs B-line project. Also selected international students liaison Nirmal Raj to sit on the search committee for the university’s new vice-president of university relations and selected business & professional studies representative Joey Sidhu to sit on university’s the convocation graduand regalia committee.
To read the full set of December 14 board minutes, please visit the CSU website. The next board meeting is scheduled for January 4 in Birch 126.
Here are the highlights from the December 7th meeting of the CSU board of directors.
The meeting started with a presentation from the Capilano University president Paul Dangerfield. The board also approved future CSU events including massage therapy. They also approved the purchase of a 3D printer for the CSU 3D Printing Club.
To read the full set of December 7 board minutes, please visit the CSU website. The next board meeting is scheduled for December 14 in Birch 126.
Here are the highlights from the November 23 meeting of the CSU board of directors.
The CSU board has approved the investment of $20,000 into the Sunshine Coast Credit Union’s Impactful Investment Fund. This risk-free investment is a great way to stay connected, while supporting our students and community on the Sunshine Coast.
CapRocks has officially launched! Ticket sales has begun for the January 11 concert and are available for purchase at the CSU Members Centre and the cafeteria during lunch hour.
To read the full set of November 23 board minutes, please visit the CSU website. The next board meeting is scheduled for November 30 in Birch 126.
Here are the highlights from the November 2 meeting of the CSU board of directors.
The board approved contributing $2,200 to provide food for the Elder-in-Residence program on Wednesdays at the Kéxwusm-áyakn Student Centre. The board also approved events for the CSU’s De-stress Series, including massage therapy and therapy dog events.
Capilano senate representative Graeme Sleep and CSU students of colour liaison Nirmal Raj were appointed to a search committee for the university’s new director of student affairs. Women students liaison Makenzie Thorpe and business & professional studies faculty representative Joey Sidhu were added to a search committee for the university’s new registrar.
The CSU board of directors are currently seeking two students to join the search committee for the director of continuing studies and executive education.
To read the full set of November 2 board minutes, please visit the CSU website. The next board meeting is scheduled for November 23 in Birch 126.
Here are the highlights from the October 19 meeting of the CSU board of directors.
The board selected CSU president Anna-Elaine Rempel as representative on the university’s food and beverage committee. They also selected Rempel and accessibility justice coordinator Andre to be delegates to the Canadian Alliance of Student Association’s Advocacy Week, with business & professional studies representative Joey Sidhu as the alternate delegate.
To read the full set of October 19 board minutes, please visit the CSU website. The next board meeting is scheduled for November 2, in Birch 126.
Here are the highlights from the October 5 meeting of the CSU board of directors.
Six board members were selected to represent the CSU at the Alliance of BC Students Lobby Days 2018. Lobby Days is an exciting opportunity to have student voices heard in BC Legislative Assembly. It was voted on that the CSU supports the smoking of recreational and medical cannabis on Capilano University campuses in tobacco smoking areas.
To read the full set of October 5 board minutes, please visit the CSU website. The next board meeting is scheduled for October 19, in Birch 126.