As you all may or may not know, NUS Conference is next week.
In order to ensure my intentions are transparent, I will write about who I am voting for in the elections at NUS. I will focus on my voting intentions for elections as opposed to motions. The reason for this is because as a delegate for the University of Birmingham, I am expected to vote in line with Guild policy and so my voting intentions for motions need not explicitly be stated.
However, if anyone has any questions concerning motions, please feel free to send comment or send me an email on firstname.lastname@example.org
ELECTIONS- Who I intend to vote for President and Vice President(s) (VPs)
The President and the Vice Presidents are elected at NUS National conference for a 12 month term. They will be representing all students across the UK, in further and higher education. However, as I am a Higher education delegate, I can’t vote for VP Further education.
PRESIDENT-RON (Re-open nominations)
VP Higher Education- Hattie Craig
I recognize Hattie’s commitment to free education and calls for a more effective movement. This is important because the only way free education will come about it by direct action which Hattie is committed to.
NUS VP Society & Citizens- Piers Telemacque
Put simply, Pier did a great job during the last academic year and he is bound to do so again if he is given the chance. He has experience and has led numerous campaigns around issues such as fighting for funding where it is needed, ie to maintain youth services, fighting against cuts in education. Most impressing however, is the fact that he is also committed to issues which most people don’t often give enough attention to such as prisoner education. Finally, it goes without saying that the fight against police brutality, racism and fascism continue to disproportionately affect BME communities thus we need individuals like Piers who are prepared to fight and struggle to ensure safety in our communities.
NUS VP Union Developmemt- Abdi Suleiman
Abdi’s commitment to the student movement cannot be commended enough. It is clear that he hopes to transform the way in which the student movement is as at current, not to say that it is lacking in anyway, but there is a need to engages with external organisations and also increase NUS involvement in liberation issues by way of financial backing. Finally, his dedication to free, fair and affordable education means that he will organise and priorities around the need for free education.
NUS VP Welfare- Shelly Asquith
Having read her manifesto, it is clear that Shelly Asquith understands the need to really focus on the specific needs, and lack thereof, students require during their time at University. For example, she is commitment to organizing around free education for Higher education and international students coupled with the emphasis on affordable housing. Finally, in light of the continuous fascist activity that plagued University of Birmingham this year, we need student representatives on a national level that are ready to challenge anti fascism, anti Semiticism, islamophobia and other forms of discrimination, Shelly addresses these areas in her manifesto and also mentions how she aims to organise to ensure the safety of students.
When voting for students for the NUS Block of 15 elections, I will judge it mainly on how well they aim to represent students which will be clear from their action points and ideas and finally, what specific policies they advocate.
Judging by individual manifesto points, these are some of the candidates I may vote for, for Block of 15. However, these are subject to change based on their speeches on the day.
Areeb- dedicated to fighting to put the issue of the BME attainment gap on the national agenda
Dan Slavin- places emphasis on the need for more accountability to students
Sherry Iqbal (FE)
Harris Ahmed (FE)