Union Senate (17th April 2018)


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Name of Committee Union Senate
Date and time 17th April 2018, 18:15
Place Students' Union (SUSU)
Present Members
Max Hayman
Vice President Sports Stephen Gore
Scott Mccarthy
Vice President Welfare Samantha Higman
Vice President Student Communities Arun Aggarwal
Vice President Education Samuel Dedman
Vice President Democracy and Creative Industries Evie Reilly
Charlie Morris
Petra Jones
Ellis Murrell
Chair of Senate Cecile Howard
Senator George Hart
Absent with Apologies Senator Giles Howard
Union President Flora Noble
Sports Development Zone Representative Olivia Owen
Laura Barr
Senator Luke Taylor
Senator Kimberly Goodell
Absent without Apologies Senator Danny Kunda
Senator Qasim Hussain

Actions and Decisions

Decision Minutes of the previous meeting were unanimously approved.
Action The first 4 sections of Rule 10: Praise and support for members and officers should be brought to Union Senate.
Action Steve to hold a meeting to discuss how the Union should address hesitancy from sports teams during the Sexual Consent Awareness campaign.
Action Action no. 4 of the previous Union Senate meeting to be taken to the next: Flora to contact Surrey Union's Chief Executive to ask how students were effected by the restructure they had.
1. Welcome and apologies

The Chair of Senate introduced all those present from the Sabbatical Team and the Senators. The chair also confirmed that there had been two resignations from Senator Giles Howard and Senator Luke Taylor since the previous meeting of Union Senate.


2. Minutes from the previous meeting

The minutes of the previous meeting were unanimoulsy approved.

Decision Minutes of the previous meeting were unanimously approved.
3. Update on Actions

1 - Arun confirmed that since the previous meeting there had been no planned talks and so this action was still ongoing. 

2 - Sam updated Union Senate on the success of paper straws at the Union, also confirming that SUSU had reduced plastic us by 1/3. Union Films were also supplied with a new batch of paper straws after the last meeting of Union Senate.

3 - Evie confirmed that the paper submitted to the previous Union Senate on the allocation of Clubs and Societies to Zones, will be added in to the Union Review which is still ongoing. 

4 - The Chair of Senate confirmed that Rule 10: Praise and Support for members and officers will begin to be included in Union Senate meetings going forward and asked for this to be reactioned for the final Union Senate of the year.

5 - Since the previous meeting of Union Senate a meeting has not yet been scheduled to discuss the hesitancy of clubs to get involved in Sexual Consent Awareness campaigns. The Chair asked for this to be reactioned for the next meeting.

6 - As Flora was not able to be present at the meeting, the final action will be discussed in the next meeting. However, the team did update Union Senate on the South Coast Meet-Up stating that the knock on effects were discussed.

Action The first 4 sections of Rule 10: Praise and support for members and officers should be brought to Union Senate.
Action Steve to hold a meeting to discuss how the Union should address hesitancy from sports teams during the Sexual Consent Awareness campaign.
Action Action no. 4 of the previous Union Senate meeting to be taken to the next: Flora to contact Surrey Union's Chief Executive to ask how students were effected by the restructure they had.
Senate Reports and Papers
4. Reports from the Sabbatical Officers


  • Work is progressing on the sites strategy; Arun updated Union Senate on the work that is taking place on the next steps with the CEO.
  • The role of Freshers Rep has been changed ahead of the 2018/19 Freshers period.
  • The tunnel between buildings 40 and 42 will be painted next term by students at our WSA Campus.
  • The last funding round is now complete, Student Communities and the External Engagement Zone were able to award £3,500 to clubs and societies.
  • Arun also updated the Senators that he has been working on a By-Law that will cover the Union's stance on Harassment.
  • Arun has also been working on RAG week and the upcoming EVAs (Excellence in Volunteering Awards).

Sam H

  • Met with the team at the University about the Gender Neutral toilets.
  • The One-By-One shelf is now established in the shop and there are new coffee machines installed that are locally sourced coffee.
  • A Resilience workshop was held for Expect Respect, the campaign will also be included in the Welfare in Sport work that is happening.
  • Work is taking place on Housing Plans for the future.
  • Sam updated the Union Senate on her work with introducing Bees to campus and empowering student leaders in their roles.


  • Summer Elections will be starting soon, nominations will open on Monday 30 April.
  • Evie confirmed that she has been working on the Union Review and has started with the Student Leaders roles as these are important to the campaigns the Union runs.
  • The clubs and societies affiliation criteria is being reviewed, the Democracy Zone By-Laws are also being updated. Until these are complete we wont be taking any more affiliations.
  • There are no more strikes planned by the Union is still working with students and the UCU.
  • The Making Change Summit was held earlier in the day, a full report will be taken to the next Union Senate.


  • Progress has been made and the Student Services will be recruiting a new member of staff. This means that there will be the possibility to have split payments for Sport and Wellbeing.
  • Steve updated on his progress working on the Sports Pass and on introducing Scholarships in sport.
  • The Storage Review will now be addressed, there will potentially be temporary lockers on campus.
  • BUCS in Gloucester and attendance to the Regional Conference.
  • Introducing Welfare Officer for clubs.

Sam D

  • Industrial Action is now over.
  • NSS is sitting at 12% engagement.
  • Discussion around free printing will be taking place tomorrow, updates will be provide as they happen.
  • There is now a Hot Tap in the library for students to make their own hot drinks.
  • The University withdrew from the previous Student Forum plan, the next one will take place on 2 May.
  • New email system for Academic Reps has been launched.
5. Questions from Senators


Question: With your work on the EVAs, what has been done to make sure that it is as inclusive as possible? Year on year, nominations seem to come through from the same groups but there are many other groups and volunteers to be recognised.

Arun: An all student email was sent out to make sure that everyone was aware that nominations had opened. He also discussed the work that has been done with Clubs and Societies to make sure more nominations come through. He has left thoughts for the team next year working on EVAs of how they can improve on this work.

Steve: The names of some awards have been changed to open it up and make it easier to nominate more people for categories, he expressed confidence that there were new groups nominated this year.

Question: What are you doing to ensure Fresher Reps aren't just here to go drinking?

Arun: This has been an issue for Fresher Reps as they have mainly been responsible for getting student to and from clubs. This year, there is more focus on welfare, Arun confirmed that they would be responsible for helping student to meet each other and form friendships. Overall, the Union is trying to reduce alcohol in Freshers events which will help with this. The training has been made more comprehensive and includes information about PG and mature students.

Question: Would Fresher Reps become a mentor?

Arun: More like an older sibling than a mentor.

Question: Last year there was no vetting for Freshers Reps, is this the case again for the coming Freshers?

Arun: No, this year there will be vetting of Fresher Reps.

Question: Can you expand on the work you are doing with other Unions in the area?

Arun: We have been sharing best practise and in particular discussing issues that are shared such as housing for students. We have also been working with the Council on this projects.

Steve: There will be a new sports centre in the next few years at Winchester Uni. We are working with them to make sure it is offered to WSA students to use.


Sam H

Question: The new coffee machine in the shop doesn't hold non-dairy milk. Is there anything that can be done about this?

Sam: I have asked about this but it isn't possible. The Bridge does provide the same service at the same price with non-dairy milk though.


Question: There wasn't a separate event set up for Union Senate, instead it was included in the event for the Making Change Summit.

Cecile: Sorry about this, we will make sure it is set up as a separate event in future.

Question: How will you validate the effort made by the media teams?

Evie: We are looking to introduce a Creative Industries Award. Also, we can endorse on LinkedIn and write recommendations.

Question: With your work on the Union Review, are you planning to set up a working group?

Evie: The project would be too big for a working group to manage, we will be starting as the sabbatical team to work out what needs addressing. After this, we will consult with students and send individual items to specific groups who are affected so they can contribute.


Question: Your senate report was only submitted today?

Steve: Unfortunately, I did send it before I went on leave but my outlook failed and all my emails from that day were lost.

Sam D:

Question: At the Making Change Summit you talked about the sustainability of printing, but here at Union Senate all the sabbatical team have print-outs of their reports.

Sam: This is true, we could definitely all do better especially as we have i-pads for work. I will look into what we can do as a Union to cut down unnecessary printing.

Question: Are you able to give us an update on compensation for students after the strike action?

Sam: At the moment, we aren't sure when it will happen, we are still waiting for a University to break rank on the issue and provide compensation. We are working on it and pushing it with the University.

6. Spring Election Report

The attached report is a summary of statistics from the period and a set of recommendations for next year. This is for reference as Union Senate has oversight of Elections.

Question: In previous years, there has been talk about reducing the incentives for voting but it seemed that there were still a lot of stands set up around campus?

Evie: Flora was the DRO for this election as I was running as a candidate. She and the team will have planned these incentives.

Steve: There was less focus on incentives this year and more on informed voting which has been successful.

Sam D: There has also been more focus on sites for particular days.

Question: What will you put in place for next year when you are DRO?

Evie: There will be more focus on candidate welfare and the timeline will be changed to reshape the whole period. Candidate feedback needs to be improved as there are too many channels of communication with the team, instead there will be candidate drop-ins and more interaction with other staff.

Steve: There was more diversity in candidates this year, but there wasn't as much diversity in the voting outcomes. More could be done to improve this and support should be given to international students.

7. You Make Change

Question: What format would Union Senate like the report in?

Answer: How many submissions have been recieved, how many have been answer and by which sabbatical and a summary of any important actions taken. 

8. Industrial Action

We have already touched on the Industrial Action which has now ended. The University is in talks at the moment about another pension scheme.

9. The Making Change Summit

The sustainability of the event was good, we will be reusing our marketing for next time to reduce waste. Engagement was low unfortunately, likely to be to do with this being the second day back from Easter and close to dissertation hand-ins. 

Question: How will you improve marketing of the event to students who aren't very involved in the Union?

Steve: This is an issue for many of our events, they are often marketed too lade which can be off-putting. 

Evie: Elections also suffers from this problem, facebook is quite passive as many students will accept invitations but won't be able to come in the end. 

Sam: Power teas have worked amazingly well, 70 people can to the last and we ran out of everything. The Academic Integrity event also saw 150 people, this shows we should be going to students rather than asking them to come to us. 

Question: How will you make Union Senate interesting to increase engagement?

Evie: The first Union Senate of the year had good engagment as it was about the VC's pay. We need to have a key issue to discuss and clear actions afterwards.

Sam: We could move back to up and down voting on student decided topics.

Evie: This could be linked to You Make Change.

Chair of Senate: Senators should be invited to the next You Make Change meeting.

Question: All media teams should be told as soon as a date is set as there is only one member of media present today. 

Chair of Senate: The next meeting will take place at WSA Campus on Thursday 17 May from 18:15

10. AOB

Flora submitted a report and sent appologies. She welcomes questions by email or through You Make Change. She will be attending the next meeting in May.

The complaint was submitted and was consulted on under Rule 9. It has been rejected, we don't have any further updates on this but the disciplinary will not be going ahead for Flora. 

Key: P (Papers Provided), PF (Papers to Follow)