AMS Statement Regarding ASUS Orientation Social
On August 28th, the AMS was made aware of an incident that occurred at an ASUS Orientation Leader social. The external performer demonstrated inappropriate behavior and made racially and culturally insensitive comments. The AMS condemns all acts of racism and are profoundly disappointed that this occurred. The safety and wellbeing of all students is our utmost priority, and we acknowledge the hurt that it has caused.
Our immediate action is to support all students affected by this event. The AMS assisted ASUS in hosting two debriefs, involving the AMS Executive, the ORT Coordinator, the Commissioners of Social Issues (External and Internal), the Commissioner of Campus Affairs and the Peer Support Center Outreach Assistant Manager. The purpose of these sessions was to have meaningful conversation in a voluntary, small group format. Any Orientation Leader or Executive was welcome to share within their comfort level. To provide an avenue for confidential communication, an anonymous feedback form was created and distributed. We sincerely commend all student Leaders who voiced their thoughts on the matter.
The AMS worked with the Division of Student Affairs to offer a list of resources to the ASUS Orientation team. Those consulted include Four Directions, Yellow House, Queen’s University International Centre, Ban Righ Centre and Faith and Spiritual Life. In addition, the Peer Support Center offered extended hours to dedicate one on one support to the ASUS team. The disbursement of resources is ongoing as ASUS and the AMS continue to receive feedback.
Furthermore, the performer will be banned from any AMS sanctioned event. This information will be contained in all relevant documentation moving forward. We will be recommending this same course of action for the University. Upon feedback from ASUS student Leaders, we will be working to provide a guide for event organizers to be equipped with the tools to respond to situations such as these.
The AMS, ASUS and the University continue to explore ways to best support the ASUS Orientation Team. The conversation does not end here, and we are committed to uplifting all student Leaders.