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By website-comment on 22.1.2024

Union Council Preview 22.10.09

Welcome back friends! Are you ready to get back into the inner recesses of that decision-making body known as “union council?” Are you prepared to examine the cogs and mechanisms of this union machine? I didn’t think so…but I’m going to give it to you anyway.

To some extent, union council will be overshadowed this week by the untimely death of its postgraduate officer, Jason Simpkins. For the rest of this year, council will be operating one short; both in membership and in spirit.

We start this week’s council with Presentations on the Strategic Review processes, by President Tom Christian, and on the Social Policy Document, by Democracy and Representation manager Rachel Evans. These are updates and continuations from the last meeting.
With yet another member of the union resigning, this time Vice-chair Alexander Wright, elections for this position are once again open. It seems that finding people that have the ability to stay silent for a period of three hours is hard to find these days.

Talking about elections, election fever is already starting to hit the union; symptoms include: an insatiable desire to vote, with the March election still two months away. Elections manager, Joe Cooper, will not only foresee the elections of the Life and Honorary membership committee (who wouldn’t want to be a life time member of the union and be able to go into the venue for free up until old age?) in this council, but will update us on the elections 2009.

VP Education, Helen Palmer, and VP Welfare Tom Page, will also delight us with a presentation; one on the liberation review. The review is some of the culmination of work and research with liberation officers (Womens, LTBT, Ethnic Minorities Officer etc) and deals with how various groups represented by these officers can be better represented and empowered, amongst other things.

Among the sabbatical reports, it is interesting to note VP Sports, Cai Robbins’ ‘Fresh Start’ campaign is now under way. This involves get more people active and into sport- something to melt away the pounds put on during Christmas and New Year. Hmmm…melted cheese…

The president has stated that “Kent Union made £67,000 less then we had anticipated that month meaning year-to-date we are unfortunately now £37,000 below budget.” It seems that evil doer, the credit crunch, has struck again! Buy, everyone, buy! Stock up on Jaffa Cakes from from Essentials! Luckily our saviour Tom Christian is negotiating with the National Union of Students Services Limited (NUSSL) to lower prices in light of the current economic climate. No need to just panic yet. The president’s visit to Israel before Christmas as part of the NUS Young Political Leaders Delegation is also worthy of a mention; he seems to have gained some inspiration from it, as he had a “fascinating and eye-opening trip and one I cannot summarize in this report; however I am writing an article for the next edition of InQuire which will cover my conclusions and link in with the current situation in Gaza.” I’m hoping the next issue of inQuire will have the headline ‘Union President solves Gaza conflict.’ Wow. Was that on his manifesto?

Helen Palmer will start her campaign for Anonymous Marking this month, very cleverly using stickers for students to stick onto essays they are submitting, calling for Anonymous Marking. Knowing Helen Palmer, the stickers will read “I’m too sexy for my name…”

Want to see the policy makers in action? Not going out on Thursday night? Want to rave it up with your representatives? Come to Union Council, this Thursday 22nd January, in the Senate from 6pm onwards. Additionally, excitement is starting to build around Kent Union’s Annual General meeting, which will take place on Tuesday 3rd February, 6pm, Elliot Dining Hall.


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