Image: Warwick SU

SU to lobby for universal lecture capture and a people’s vote

All motions were carried in the Term 2 All Student Vote, mandating the Students’ Union (SU) to lobby for universal lecture capture and to call for a people’s vote, among others.

1115 students cast a total of 7837 votes; this represents a 5% increase in voter turnout compared to the previous term, which saw 1062 students cast 6336 votes.

The motions voted on were the following:

1. Abolish or reduce the university card replacement fee
This motion saw the highest number of votes cast at 1050, with 846 votes for, 131 against, and 73 abstentions. The SU will lobby the Univeristy to abolish the fee associated with the replacement of student ID cards, or to reduce this fee to £2.

As part of this motion, the SU will also lobby for a student position on the University’s Financial Plan Sub-Committee.

2. Warwick SU for a People’s Vote
This motion saw the most opposition, with 243 votes against. It still passed, however, with 564 students voting in favour, and 182 abstentions.

The SU will “call for a people’s vote on the terms of the Brexit deal, and, once gained, to campaign to Remain in the European Union.” A “Day of Action” will also be organised on campus before 29 March 2019.

3. Say Your Goodbyes to STIs
863 students voted for this motion, 42 against and 77 abstained. The SU will lobby the Health Centre to blood tests and extended sexual health services on site, to include these in the terms and conditions of future Health Centre buildings and extensions, and to provide sexual health clinics on campus in collaboration with ISHS Coventry.

4. Improving Blood Donation Facilities on Campus
With 826 students voting in favour, this motion mandates the SU to “to investigate the possibility of having blood donation available on campus” and raise awareness on the issue.

5. Earlier Exam Timetable
This motion had the most votes in favour at 923, with only 33 votes against and 62 abstentions. The SU will lobby the University to release exam timetables earlier, to allow the Education Exec to look into the effect of releasing the timetable late on students. It will also lobby departments “to be as transparent as possible in communicating likely exam periods and dates to students”.

6. Universal Lecture Capture
719 students voted in favour of the universal lecture capture motion, while 142 voted against and 123 abstained. As a result, the SU will push for “consistent standards of lecture recording and publication across modules, departments, and faculties”, an “opt-out” system rather than the opt-in one currently in place, and for expanding facilities for this purpose.

7. Workers’ Rights at Warwick
This motion saw a total of 920 votes, with 665 for, 90 against and 165 abstaining. The SU resolves to lobby the University to avoid zero-hour contracts wherever possible, to campaign for the University to meet the “Six demands for fair teaching conditions at Warwick” of Warwick Anti-Casualisation, and to educate students about their rights at work and membership options for trade unions.

8. Warwick for a Fair Wage
This motion will mandate the SU to push for it to become a living wage certified body and then an accredited body by April 2020, and for the University to do the same.

Democracy and Development Officer Ben Newsham told The Boar: “It’s great to see student engagement with the All Student Vote remaining high with over 1,100 individuals voting. The Union remains an organisation driven by our members: the students.

“Thanks to the votes cast we now have a strong mandate to campaign for a further cut to the university card fee, improving sexual health services on campus, a People’s Vote on the final Brexit deal, and more. We all look forward to working with students to bring about the changes they have just voted for.”

During the All Students’ Meeting some students showed opposition to the motions. The lecture capture motion was particularly debated, with some students claiming that this would prevent academics from speaking more freely. Concerns were also raised about the possibility of lecture capture being used to undermine industrial action. However, the SU has resolved to support the UCU in “securing an agreement with the University” in this respect”.

The people’s vote motion was also debated, with some students raising questions about the democracy of the EU and Warwick SU’s stance on the topic.

There fair wage motion also saw considerable debate regarding the feasibility of the proposals and whether the SU would be able to support these financially.

The full results and the motion documents can be found here.

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