All entries for Tuesday 17 February 2009

February 17, 2009

Letter to the Boar

Letter published in the Boar 10/2/09

Dear Sir,
We have become concerned this year over our Student Union President’s flagrant disregard for Union Council. Public attacks on Council in your newspaper, in which he has denounced Council as “irresponsible” and not attempting to represent students’ views, are insulting. We find his public criticism of Union policy, which he is mandated to enforce, damaging to trust in our Union’s democratic processes. Debate within Union Council and before policies are enacted is very healthy. However, demonising Union councillors for decisions made with which he disagrees, and which he is expected to uphold is only likely to undermine the Union’s ability to function.
We would also like to express our dismay that he saw fit to act as a judge in a talent contest instead of attending Union Council for the full duration. Despite his vigorous exhortations in the Boar against a ban on McDonalds advertising, he manifestly saw little value in voicing such arguments in Council.
We hope our President will, in future, attend Council for its entire duration and make his case there rather than simply in the Boar the following week.
Yours sincerely
Andrew Rosser, Union Councillor
Barnaby Pace, Union Councillor
Chris Rossdale, Union Councillor
Dave Steele, Lifelong Learning Officer
Hannah Smith, Union Councillor
Jack Ashton, Student with Disabilities Campaigns Officer
James Hilsdon, LGBTUA+ Campaigns Officer
Jess Raw, Environment Campaigns Officer
Lorna Russell, Union Councillor
Puneet Dhaliwal, Welfare Committee Chair
Sam Glace, Union Councillor
Sumaiya Khaku, Academic Representation Forum Coordinator
Sami Wannell, Executive Committee Officer
Sarah Reader, Ethics and Social Justice Campaigns Officer
Tommy Precious, Union Councillor

Union Council Voting Record

As a result of the same problems being raised year after year with not enough students being aware of Union Council and the decisions they make, I have attempted to put together my voting record. I hope that the 4th year students who I represent on council will have a look (as can anyone else who is interested) and give me any feedback they would like. Obviously I can’t agree with everyone and its simply not possible to survey and poll all the 4th years in advance of every vote, but I hope that my opinions represent those of many students. Also a system of noting voting patterns could be useful for those seeking re-election or election to an officer role.

This voting record is accurate to my knowledge, I have not included the occasional vote that I cannot remember my position on (sometimes they get quite complicated!). Feel free to comment. I have also noted when I have proposed or seconded policies (sponsored policy). This record is roughly modelled on the information you can find on your MPs at The votes are in chronological order. Please also apologies that I have only include the title of each motion, sometimes the title doesn’t fully explain the policy and may even be misleading (for example “Discrimination in the National Blood Service” is about campaigning against discrimination in the national blood service).

1st Council 2008-2009
Voted to take Freshers/ Induction week to referendum
Voted for Freshers accomodation
Voted against NUS reform
Voted for Opposing NUS reform
Voted against Breaking World Records
Voted against Student Fees
Voted for Sabbatical Officers Holding Positions of Responsibility in the union
Voted for Cannabis in University Halls of Residence
Voted for Union Independence
Voted for Multi Faith Working Group
Voted for Themed Weeks
Voted for Adding a 4th warwick sport member
Voted to lapse Renaming the MSAGI Campaigns Officer to LGBTUA+ Campaigns Officer
Voted to lapse Governance Reform
Voted to lapse Sponsorship for Union Counci
Voted to agree amendment to Steering Group Remit.

2nd Council 2008-2009
Voted for Adherence of Warwick NUS Delegates to Warwick Policy
Voted for GM foods
Voted for Smoke and Alcohol Free-Space in the Union
Sponsored and Voted for Academics Spying on Muslim Students
Voted against amendment 2 to RAG cloakroom
Voted for Womens Committee
Voted for Institute of Education Representative
Voted to lapse Oriental Food Outlet

3rd Council 2008-2009
Voted for Promoting Union Democracy
Sponsored and voted for Campaigning Against ID Cards
Sponsored and voted for Refusal of Oil Company Advertising and Sponsorship
Voted for Associate Membership of Societies Federation
Sponsored and voted for Condemnation of Delegates to NUS Extraordinary Conference
Voted for Ratification of the Appointment of the Board of Trustees

4th Council 2008-2009
Voted against Amendment to Policy 324 Adherence of Warwick NUS Delegates to Warwick Policy
Voted for This Union Shall Not Ban Books
Voted for Campaign Against the BNP
Voted for Specialist Food Provision
Voted for Access to the University Experience
Voted against Supporting NUS Reform and Re-engaging with NUS
Voted for Reaffirming Our Support for Liberation in NUS
Voted for Lifelong Honorary Membership for Shakeel Padamsey
Voted for Wednesday Afternoons
Voted for McDonalds
Voted for Discrimination in the National Blood Service
Voted for Sensible Drinking
Voted for Testicular Cancer
Voted for Supporting Temporarily Withdrawn Students
Asked a question to the president: What progress have you made in responding to policy mandates in writing letters and lobbying, and can you publish these actions on the website?
Stuart Thomson – I am meeting the VC in a couple of weeks and will talk about ID cards. A lot of the letters. I have not got around to writing all the letters yet.
Sami Wannell – I am working with Felix Faltin and Pidge on a policy review system, based on a traffic light system, red – outstanding, amber – ongoing, green – completed. This will be placed on the Website.
Michael Jones – I am also working with Pidge on specific sections of the website relating to particular policies that concern campaigns, what is happening for those campaigns i.e. the ID Card demonstration.

5th Council 2008-2009
Voted for Feedback on Work
Sponsored and voted for Student fees
Sponsored and voted for Amendment to Campaign Against the Arms Trade
Voted for Amendment One World Week
Voted for Ratification to the board of trustees
Asked a question to the president: What progress have you made in responding to policy mandates in writing letters for Oil Companies, Academics Spying on Students and ID cards. Also could these letters be posted on the Union website.
The president responded that he had written the Oil company letters but not the others. The executive committee officers said that they will work on putting the letters on the union website

February 2009

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