OUSU to keep NUS affiliation

first_imgHowever, Ruth Meredith, VP Charities & Community, and Anna Bradshaw, VP Women, both argued that NUS affiliation had been vital to their roles. Reflecting on the outcome, OUSU President Louis Trup said to Cherwell, “I’m really glad OUSU has maintained its affiliation to the NUS. The NUS allows for students to be represented in decision making at a national level, which I believe is massively important given national issues students face such as visa issues for international students, tuition fees for undergraduates and disabled students’ allowances. The NUS isn’t perfect, but it gives students loads of good stuff, be that support with campaigns like fossil fuel divestment, liberation conferences or a discount card.” Jack Matthews told Cherwell, “The NUS has turned its back on the concerns of ordinary students, and all attempts to open it up have been rebuffed. Indeed, less than 24 hrs after reaffiliation, the National Executive voted against proposals to give all students a vote in NUS elections. The NUS is broken, but those of us who have tried to fix it from within know it is an impossible task. “Just as a worker must sometimes withdraw their labour, so too must we withdraw our affiliation to NUS – it is the only way to make them listen. The status quo will not do; students deserve a better NUS, one that is routed in their everyday interests, and this is why we must continue the fight for reform. Reform that will only come from disaffiliation.” OUSU has voted to remain affiliated to the NUS for the next academic year and not to have an additional referendum. The motion, proposed at an extraordinary meeting of OUSU Council on Monday at Mansfield College, passed by 37 votes to four, with 13 abstentions. The motion was proposed by OUSU President Louis Trup and seconded by President-Elect Becky Howe. Trup’s speech in proposition focused on having “a student voice at the highest level of power”. When asked to clarify what the motion meant by asking people to “not be too whiney about it”, he explained, “We need to complain about what NUS do, not about the affiliation… as in we should complain about things,” adding, “Come on, it’s a bit funny”. Jack Matthews, VP for Graduates, spoke in opposition. He argued that the NUS is not supportive of OUSU’s work, stating, “When we have needed the NUS it has not been there… it has not been value for money.” Currently, the cost of affiliation to the NUS is £27,949. Matthews also described how “uncomfortable” he felt in “a supposedly democratic setting” when the NUS National Conference applauded Margaret Thatcher’s death. James Blythe, VP Access and Academic Affairs, stated that NUS had been almost useless in supporting him and that both money and time could be better spent should OUSU disaffiliate from the NUS.last_img read more