Ouch! The truth stings, doesn’t it? Introducing Paper Cuts: our short, erratic and slightly painful updates on current events.

Police Review Board
UF has recently created a police advisory board, which was called for last year by a Student Government (SG) referendum. Unfortunately, the new advisory board falls short of SG’s intentions. It has no investigatory power, which is defined as the ability to subpoena documents that would have otherwise not been available to the public. Unlike the review board in Key West, it can only review completed internal affairs documents, which are available to the public anyway. It also consists of fewer students (only three out of eight members) and no permanent minority representation.

The Coalition for Justice Against Police Brutality, the main protest group that demanded the advisory board’s creation, contends as a primary grievance that Linda Stump, chief of the UFPD, sits at the head of the board. The power is in her hands to convene the board and veto its decisions. Furthermore, the board’s conclusions are non-binding. Essentially, this is a glorified complaint box, according to protesters.

Meal Limits Compromise
On March 31, the City Plan Board, an advisory board for the City Commission, voted unanimously for the “time limit compromise.” Kent Vann, executive director of St. Francis House, initially proposed the compromise, which would limit the time they can serve the needy to three hours each day from 10:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., as opposed to limiting the amount of meals they can serve. The City Commission still needs to vote on this, though. In 2009, when the City Plan Board recommended an end to the meal limit, the City Commission voted them down.

Fox News, Eh?
We don’t want to be like Americans, eh?  Canada’s media broadcast regulator, the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) proposed lifting a ban on broadcasting fake or misleading news this past January.  The CRTC stated the proposal was in response to a ten-year-old committee request to reconsider the ban’s wording, as it may violate freedom of speech.

The CRTC’s sudden interest in this decade-old request coincides with the launch of a new 24-hour news network by the Sun News Network called SunTV.  Sun News is one of the most right-wing newspapers in Canada and the station is expected to have a hard right-wing bias, earning the title “Fox News North.”  Unlike Fox News in America, SunTV will not be allowed to blur the line between real news and “fake news and misleading information” in its broadcast unless the ban is lifted.

The proposal to lift the ban was met with harsh criticism from Canadians, who feared that their country’s media would become like the polarized American media where sensationalism, “fake news” and opinions take the place of real news. Due to public outcry, the CRTC dropped their proposal to lift the ban. SunTV will have to stick to its tag line of “hard news and straight talk.”

For more paper cuts, check out Paper Cuts / 4.1.11.