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Calls for legislation preventing another Laurentian debacle

Laurentian University is officially out of creditor protection as of Monday, two days ahead of the deadline it was facing. Now, calls are resuming for a change to legislation so this precedent can never happen again.

The Canadian Association of University Teachers said there needs to be more accountability for what has happened and has called on the federal liberal government to remove publicly-funded post-secondary education institutions from the Companies' Creditors Arrangement Act (CCAA).

"We need commitment from the government to say we will sponsor legislation to deal with these issues so that no other university or college in the country will have to go through this process again," CAUT executive director David Robinson said.

"I want to be able to table that legislation in the House of Commons and in effect what it would do is would not allow any post-secondary institution to be able to access and use the CCAA," Sudbury MP Viviane Lapointe said.

The school's faculty association also said there is still work that needs to be done.

"Now that we are no longer constrained by the limitations of the CCAA, we will use the tools at our disposal to ensure that the new administration implements the improvements we’ve called for," said Fabrice Colin, the president of the Laurentian University Faculty Association.

In the auditor general of Ontario’s special report on Laurentian university, it details years of financial mismanagement and what was called an unnecessary decision to file for insolvency protection.

"Reforming our governance, improving operations and heeding the recommendations of the auditor general will keep us on track but, most importantly, we must be committed to respecting all of the university’s stakeholders as key decisions about the future are made," said Jeff Bangs, the LU board chair.

"We are committed to rebuilding pride in LU and regaining the confidence of our many stakeholders and the Greater Sudbury community. We’ll do this through our actions in the months and years ahead as we form our strategic plan and continue organizational transformation," Laurentian University's interim president, Tammy Eger, said.

It was the first time a public institution in Canada declared a form of bankruptcy, a move normally only used by private companies. More than 60 programs were cut at the school and 150 jobs were lost in the process. Top Stories

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