Our Annual Union Meeting (AUM) happened on the 21st May at 6pm. For those who may now be clear on what an AUM is: Every year all members of the Students’ Union are invited to attend the AUM, this is their chance to have a direct say on the direction of their Union. This provides members with a chance to scrutinise the work of the Students' Union over the past year, vote on policies, examine our finances and hold the Trustee Board to account.
The business for this meeting included the following Motions which passed:
Motion to Discipline All Sabbatical Officers who do not submit their report on time to Student Assembly
The full-time sabbatical officers are entrusted by their Union electorate to carry out their work in a professional manner and work towards the manifesto points they were elected on. The process for holding officers accountable is through their reports, which are occasionally not submitted. This motion calls for disciplinary action to be taken when a report is not submitted on time by having them officially apologise and explain to Student Assembly why their report was not submitted on time, and then let the Student Assembly vote on whether to accept this apology or not. If apology is accepted, note will be taken of this and in the event of the sabbatical officer in question having more than two sanctions the matter will be passed on to the Scrutiny panel for further investigation and discussion.
Shoe Box Appeal Hand over motion to the RAG Chair and the Volunteer Chair
With the campaigns chair no longer existing in the new structure this motion was formulated to ensure the handover of the Shoe Box appeal to the Rag Chair and the Volunteer Chair. They will work together with the on campus chaplaincy and the Mustard Seed Relief organisation to deliver an innovative and engaging campaign aimed at getting as many student and staff as possible involved and collecting as many shoeboxes as possible.
Medical Centre Campaign Hand Over Motion to Vice President of College of Health and Life Sciences
With the campaigns chair no longer existing in the new structure this motion was formulated to ensure the handover of the medical centre campaign to the Vice President of the College of Health and Life Science. In order to carry on the campaign focused on student health and the on campus Medical Centre, making sure students are informed of their rights and responsibilities when it comes to using the services of the Medical Centre.
Motion To Support Free Education
This motion calls for the Union to support Free Education and campaign for; A liberated curriculum, the abolition of debt and Open and public access to Universities and colleges and democratically-controlled institutions free from surveillance and harassment by police and immigration officials. This requires us to participate in national demonstrations on free education and campaign against all methods of charging students for education.
Motion To Oppose the Counter Terrorism and Security Act
The Counter-Terrorism and Security Act proposes a number of new measures, such as placing a statutory requirement on public bodies – including universities – to ‘PREVENT people being drawn into terrorism’, permitting for the seizure of travel documents of those ’suspected of intending [to travel] in connection with terrorism-related activity’, and allowing the temporary exclusion of individuals from returning to Britain, including British nationals
In order to support this motion we as an organisation have been mandated to investigate, identity and block/cease accepting any PREVENT funding for any UBS activities or departments, Support an independent review into the legality of the proposals under the Equality and Human Rights Act 2010, and to work with the NUS Black Students Campaign and Disabled Students’ Campaign to lobby for the removal of PREVENT teaching from healthcare qualifications.
Motion to amend Bye-law B
This motion allowed us to increase the time allowed for voting to 5 days, at the moment we are restricted by the bye-laws to a minimum of 1 and a maximum of 3 days of voting. In addition to this the motion called for the Union to explore why other Unions are getting larger turn out, and look at the possibilities of implementing such ideas as having incentives for voting during elections and building the profile of the elected representatives and the Union throughout the academic year.
This motion was to update the Bye-laws of the Union to include those of the newly formed scrutiny panel which will be responsible for holding Officer and Chairs responsible. It also included an update to the membership of Student assembly, and a few minor amendments to the running of the meeting; this included a change in how often Student Assembly meets to 7 times an academic year, instead of once a month. Finally; there was also a change made to the complaints procedure to remove the now non-existent posts.
Motion to amend Bye Law H
The RAG chair elect submitted a motion requesting that the process for selecting the charities they support to be amended. Currently there is a process which allows student to nominate charities which RAG felt reduced the ability for charities to come onto campus and promote themselves prior to a decision being made. RAG will continue to have a vote on which charities we support, but the process now means that the RAG committee will shortlist a variety of charities who will be invited onto campus.
You can see the documents for this meeting in detail here. The meeting went by quickly, with very little contention, as a result all motions, reports and budgets where passed.