MSU Elections 2018: Kirstin Webb Platform Critique Without a concrete plan, Webb’s platform seems to be lacking substantial change for students

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Kirstin Webb’s candidacy surrounds three pillars that include on-campus issues, community development and a collective between the MSU and the McMaster student body.

While these three pillars reflect upon issues that McMaster students face in general, Webb’s platform suffers from a lack of concrete planning and research while lacking sufficient coverage as to how each platform point will be implemented. Using tentative language to explain her platform points, it seems as though there is no concrete plan to put into practice.

Considering her “Community” pillar, in particular, Webb focuses primarily on student safety off campus while building a relationship with the city of Hamilton. Within this pillar, Webb calls for a #SaferMac through a safety campaign and through the exploration of adding safety poles within the community.

Although this may be a strong idea on paper, it is regretful that Webb had not addressed a consultation or collaboration with campus Security Services or Hamilton Emergency services to fully assess the feasibility in implementing this platform point.

The role of security poles on campus is for student protection and assistance on campus. When a phone is activated, Security Services is called and a special constable is dispatched to the scene if needed. The idea being that if help is needed on campus, there is help on the way.

McMaster is currently in the process of installing new assistance phones throughout campus. Over the next few years, McMaster will see 55 new assistance phones complete with new technologies and infrastructure principles, including a public paging system and a CCTV unit mounted on top.

Further, campus security is only able to respond to calls made from security poles on campus. If there is an emergency issue off campus, students are expected to call 911 to reach Hamilton’s Emergency Services who will then dispatch the appropriate emergency response team.

With McMaster’s current plan of implementing new assistance phones across campus and the overall unnecessary nature of additional safety poles off campus, this aspect of Webb’s #SaferMac campaign seems to be lacking a feasible structure of implementation, consultation and collaboration with on-campus resources.

Overall, Webb’s goals are limited to a campaign that is geared more towards smaller initiatives, rather than making a substantial change through more impressive projects.

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Author: Emily O'Rourke

Emily is a recent Communication Studies grad. Now you can find her in the big seat as Editor-in-Chief. She mostly talks about PR, meme culture, coffee and dogs. Emily was also voted biggest klutz in her high school's graduating class, FYI.