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Salient. An Organ of Student Opinion at Victoria University, Wellington N.Z. Vol. 22, No. 2. March 23, 1959

Report on Caf — "Prices Reasonable"

page 6

Report on Caf

"Prices Reasonable"

At the last meeting of Exec Miss Bernice Jenks presented a report on the cafeteria. The full report is printed below.

After talking to Miss Rosie and Miss Fraser, I have come to the following conclusions:—
(a)Prices at present are reasonable.
(b)Miss Rosie is completely justified in increasing the price of the evening meal.
(c)Any lowering of prices can be arranged only through a system of subsidisation by the Students' Association, or by a change in the arrangement of the evening meal.
(d)A change in the form of the contract must be made before the cafeteria in the Student Union Building opens.
Those students who are complaining about the present prices of meals must realise the following points:—
1.Miss Rosie is managing the Cafeteria as a business and as such is entitled to make a living out of it.
2.This is a University Cafeteria and therefore open for only 30 weeks of the year and some staff must be paid throughout the main holidays to ensure their returning the following year.
3.Frequent losses incur throughout the year which are entirely Miss Rosie's expense and yet are caused by students, e.g., replacement of cups and saucers in 1958 cost £120. Such losses as these are the result of dishes being taken away from the Cafeteria and of general carelessness by students. Most students have already realised why the sweets have been placed in a closed case on the counter.

Cafeteria prices for a 3-course meal compare favourably with town prices for similar meals. In Lambton Quay prices are 4/6 and 5/-. I have been unable to determine whether this includes 1 or 2 vegetables.

The difference between Caf. and town meals appears to be in quantity, not quality.

The question of the actual position of the Cafeteria in the University is relevant at this stage—should the Caf. be a service for the students and provide meals cheaper than those at other cafeterias? This would be possible only by subsidisation by the Students' Association.

There are many reasons why the Caf. should be a service to students, but apart from complete subsidisation by Students' Association at present it is doubtful if any other arrangement could be made under the present contract without any alteration to this system. We must keep in mind the fact that the Caf. in the Student Union Building will soon be operating, and that we hope to have it open for students living in this area in the weekends also.

Seven-day opening will mean further staff and price problems, and will be possible only if students make constant and regular use of the Caf. in the weekends. This again will depend on whether or not students find that it is cheaper to eat at the Caf. than to cook for themselves or eat in town.

Increased operating costs in running the Caf. are to be discussed with the Caf. accountant and a further report shall be given at the next meeting of the executive.

A different system for operating the new Cafeteria is, I believe, necessary before the Cafe in the Student Union Building opens, and some information on the management of Cafeteria in the other universities will be helpful.

Finally, I would suggest Miss Rosie be asked to be present at executive meetings when the Cafeteria is discussed. Miss Rosie has been managing the Cafeteria since 1956 and is entitled to at least give her opinion.