Three club spaces vandalized at the University of Guelph

Three club spaces vandalized at the University of Guelph

Damaged CSA offices were being cleared for University Centre renovations   

Three Central Student Association (CSA) club spaces at the University of Guelph were vandalized over the weekend.

The vandalism included the contents of several paint cans splattered over the walls, floors, and furniture in the rooms; broken furniture; and graffiti.

Graffiti painted on the walls read: “No 1 deyed,” “FUCK YOU,” and “I AM The Resistance RIP CLUBS.”

Mirali Almaula | The Ontarion

The name of a CSA commissioner was also graffitied on multiple walls.

The CSA has asked The Ontarion to withhold this individual’s name, citing the reason they posted on their Facebook page: “This individual has not been in the city during this time, and this is blatant bullying towards this individual.”

The rooms that were vandalized were being cleared out for renovations and the doors to the rooms had been left unlocked for student-use during exams.

While several other club rooms were left unlocked, only these three rooms were vandalized.

It’s unclear if the clubs that normally would use these spaces—the Outdoors Club and Ski Club, Asian Christian Fellowship, Muslim Students Association, and Oxfam Guelph—were specifically targeted.

The vandalism damaged murals that the Outdoors Club planned to photograph for archival purposes before renovations on the rooms began.

Mirali Almaula | The Ontarion

The Ontarion spoke to Ryan Shoot, the CSA’s finance and operations commissioner, who has been overseeing the club space renovations over the last year. The renovations, which are set to start over the summer semester, will replace individual club rooms with communal, bookable space.

“Clubs are still upset about the renovation and we’re fully aware of that, but we’re just working towards making sure that the renovation is as great as it possibly can be next year and for the students who are going to be able to enjoy it next year,” said Shoot.  

While the renovation proposal was passed by the CSA’s board of directors in February 2017, some members of the community continued to express their frustrations on social media.

“An important cultural part of our university has been removed and CSA doesn’t care about this,” Leo Rosati commented on the CSA’s Facebook post regarding the vandalism.

Mirali Almaula | The Ontarion

“People believe that we didn’t do enough consultation and we didn’t reach out enough,” said Shoot.

“Personally, being the one who did all the consultation and all the reaching out, I think it’s kind of difficult for me to make a judgement call on that, but I do believe that we gave ample opportunity for people to speak up.”

Shoot added that, not only were notes made based on consultation meetings with student groups, but that space-needs assessments were also sent out to groups who couldn’t attend.

Since these offices are part of the UC renovations, the impact the damage will have on construction costs or schedule delays remains to be seen.

According to the Guelph Mercury-Tribune, Campus Community Police (CCP) are investigating the incident. Anyone with information can call CCP at 519-824-4120, ext. 52245.

Photo by Mirali Almaula/The Ontarion.