Jim Bailey, the closest thing to a Students’ Union veteran in this race with three years in either the Student Legislative Council or Student Academic Assembly, certainly has potential. Bailey has witnessed two different attitudes toward tuition as an elected official and, like other candidates, wants to see both in an inclusive approach.
Bailey pushed the need for “meaningful protests,” with students actually informed about the issues. He said this would give the average student informed opinions should they be approached by media (although he didn’t say this was a major problem in the past), and wants to break through the perception of “students whining about tuition.”
His idea of a survey to measure problems with the current student loan program is an excellent idea, and reflects his strong attitude toward consulting students.
With Bailey at the helm, the external platform may be more reliant on lobby groups, especially federally. Bailey wants to become more involved personally in the Canadian Alliance of Student Associations, and said he will run for Regional Director if elected. To improve the Council of Alberta University Students, Bailey mentioned a provincial CAUS conference (CAUSference) numerous times, but to be fair this–in many ways his strongest idea–was the brainchild of current Events Commissioner Jen Smith, a fact he acknowledged.
Like other candidates, Bailey emphasized the role of community involvement, and mentioned continuing the good work done by current VP External Lauren Batiuk. However, Bailey said he wasn’t sure of any real use of the senate, which may see him miss easy opportunities to engage the community.
Bailey may also be the least inspiring of the two incumbents in his race, but he definitely has opportunities to excel.
What will be your lobbying priorities?
“CAUS first, CASA second. The provincial government obviously decides most things
about education, but you can’t totally get yourself out of federal politics.”
How will you determine what students’ issues are?
“You just go out there and talk to them. You find out what they want you to talk
about, [and] what their problems are.”
How will you communicate those issues to the outside world?
“You have to have strong media. It’s going to be the SU organizing students together,
trying to get a unified voice, and trying to produce something that’s actually
worthwhile for the media to see.”
What will your role be on the senate?
“I always look at Senate and I’m never really sure exactly of their use. At the
same time, they’re good because there’s a lot of powerful people on the Senate.”