York president creates a new sustainability council

York President and Vice-Chancellor Mamdouh Shoukri has created a new Sustainability Council with broad representation from across campus, including students. The council, which will report to Shoukri, will provide input on ways to better address issues of sustainability on a pan-University level.

“Sustainability is an idea whose time has come,” said Shoukri. “It’s about giving future generations opportunities equal to those we have enjoyed.”

As part of York’s commitment to ethical and fair labour practices, the University has adopted a workplace code of conduct for its trademark licensees and has joined the Fair Labor Association (FLA) and the Workers’ Rights Consortium (WRC). The code outlines the conditions that must be met when licensed goods bearing York’s names and marks are manufactured. York’s code is as progressive, if not more so, than those of peer institutions. Shoukri approved the code of conduct on April 24 and membership was undertaken in the FLA and WRC on April 28.  

Faculty of Environmental Studies Professor Jennifer Foster (right) has agreed to chair the Sustainability Council and will be reviewing the membership and terms of reference for a September start. 

“Sustainability is about the quality of life in our communities,” said Foster.  “We need to ensure that the economic, social and environmental systems in place at York are providing a healthy, productive and meaningful life for all community residents, present and future.”