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CAUT Bulletin Archives

May 1997

Message from the Canadian Federation of Students

While the age of our members is diverse, a significant proportion fall into the 18-24 year old demographic. Statistics show that this age group has the lowest voter participation in federal elections.

One of our jobs in this federal election is to encourage our members to vote for candidates who support an accessible, high quality, public system of post-secondary education, and to convince other voters to do the same. Among the non-student vote, the Federation will target its message at parents.

In a Dec. 26, 1996 Globe and Mail article, it was reported that a cross-section of the Canadian population felt the Liberal government was vulnerable on the erosion of "universal access to public post-secondary education" due to the cuts it imposed. The article further reported that the concern came primarily from three groups: parents with infant children, who were concerned that their children would not be able to afford to attend college or university in twenty years time; parents with teen-aged children who feared that their children would not be able to pursue post-secondary in five to ten years; and finally, parents with "college or university aged" children who feared their children would not be able to afford to finish their degree or diploma.

With its aggressive campaign over the last three years to promote the rising costs of education and debt accumulation of students, the Federation has been successful in getting its message to this important group. During the election campaign, we will tap into the concerns of parents.

Main Issues in Election ‘97

The main issues of our campaign will focus on effects of the federal government cutbacks to post-secondary education.

Specifically, these issues include the skyrocketing costs to attend college and university; the crisis of student debt accumulation; and the danger of the emerging two-tiered post-secondary education system with further privatization and corporatization of our public colleges and universities.

Federation Radio Ad

The Federation has produced a 30 second ad highlighting the main issues for students in this election campaign. The purchasing of radio air-time is relatively inexpensive and is a medium that can reach both our membership and our target audience. The Federation has compiled dozens of rate sheets from radio stations across Canada. If your faculty association is interested in purchasing air-time in your area, please contact Simone St. Pierre, Communications Coordinator at for more information.

Visit the Federation’s Election ‘97 Web Site

The Federation has created an Election ‘97 web page. The site contains information important to making an impact during the federal election. The site address is