By Lauren Kelly, Editor-in-Chief
Here we are, entering back into Daylight Savings Time (DST). Most of us are still a bit groggy and out of sorts from our internal clocks getting all messed up. (At least, I am.) I’m looking forward to the extra hour of sun at the end of the day, and I think it’s something we all really need to get us out of this brutal winter we’ve dealt with.
However, DST is controversial. When it starts in March, the time jump results in an increase in accidents and heart attacks. It’s just like sudden jet lag, and it takes a few days for a lot of people to adjust to it. Some people think it would be okay to just remove it altogether. Most of Saskatchewan and Manitoba don’t have DST, and instead stay in regular time year-around. Other countries around the world don’t use it, either. Still, many people argue for its use. It’s nice having that extra light in the spring and summer, even if the first bit is difficult. However, who really wants the extra hour of darkness in the winter when we go back an hour?
Instead of removing DST and living our lives in regular time, I would argue for removing regular time and living in DST. There are more benefits to having our extra daylight in the evening instead of in the morning, and choosing one or the other gets rid of the aforementioned side effects of springing forward in the first place. For one, keeping more light in the winter would help with our mental health. Many of us feel down or less motivated during the short days of winter, and this is even worse for those with Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), a kind of season-dependant depression, which is at its worst during dark winter months. Tourism sees a huge boost with more light in the evenings, as people are more likely to go out and spend time at events and with friends.
I personally think staying in DST through the winter would help revitalize our city. It would mean our earliest sunset this year would be 5:13 p.m. instead of 4:13 p.m., and every day in December would have people leaving their 9–5 jobs to sunlight instead of darkness. Sure, that would also mean losing an hour in the morning, but I think most would feel that’s worth it. For Douglas students, the New West campus is filled with natural light sources, such as the huge windows of the concourse. It would be refreshing and uplifting to have more natural light filling the school.
Overall, it would make a big difference in even the darkest of months. I think it would be worth it.