What is a Referendum?
A Referendum is a direct vote in which the entire electorate is invited to accept or reject a particular proposal.
In this case the "entire electorate" is all members of the Union of Brunel Students.
When a decision's been made this way, it can't be overruled by any other part of the Union, such as Student Assembly, a Union Meeting or the Student Officers as it's considered to be the ultimate voice of Brunel students. In fact, a Referendum might be called by students to challenge a decision made by any of those bodies or individuals.
There are no referenda running at the present time.
How to call a Referendum?
To call a Referendum, you just need to create a petition that's signed by 150 Brunel students. Your proposal will need to be clear, and worded as a question that can be answered with a simple 'yes' or 'no'. We'll then put it to a vote amongst all Union members - in practice, that's more or less any Brunel student who hasn't specifically opted out. A Referendum can also be called through a vote at Student Assembly and the Trustee Board.
How to pass a Referendum?
In order for your proposal to be accepted:
- at least 5% of Union members will need to cast their vote.
- at least half the votes cast will need to be in favour of your proposal, or,
- at least two-thirds of the votes cast will need to be in favour of your proposal if you're petitioning for a change to our Constitution, or a Vote of No Confidence against a Student Officer to remove them from their position.
- Abstentions count towards quoracy but do not count on either side for the purposes of determining the majority decision.
This is in accordance with our constitution, (Bye-law E, Referendum).
Campaigning on a Referendum
The Union will support students in running both Yes and No campaigns during a Referendum. There will be a set of rules in place to guide campaigning activities, and a budget available to cover the expenses of the campaign. You will usually be asked to submit your interest in running a campaign for either in advance of the vote.
If you wish to run a Yes or a No campaign please contact the Student Voice Manager.