Union Elections: VOTE

The electoral commission come to town

How apt it is that the electoral commission decide to come to town the week of the union elections. But are people more likely to vote in national or regional elections than they are in union elections. Probably not. I think the figure floating about from previous elections is that 94% of students do not vote.

On a more positive note, to contest the likes of ISoc and The Socialist Workers and slate has emerged called “Students First” [facebook link]. A number of people I can vouch for from that group are three PPEists from the second year.

Barney Guiton
General Secretary

This is a big one, the is effectively the Chairman/President position if the UMSU didn’t have a flat hierarchy, i.e. no one is better than anyone else, which often means no one takes any responsibility and no one can be sacked for doing a crap job. Needless to say as previous Owens Park President I’m sure Barney will do an excellent job.

Read Barney’s manifesto here.

Dominic Koole
Student Direct Editor

This is possibly the second most important job in the UMSU if not on par with Gen Sec. The reason being you see the product of a good or bad editors work ever week of uni in the shape of Student Direct. Last year an editor got voted in who had never written for the paper before. There was subsequent out cry and as a result Dom and half the SD team resigned [if they hadn’t been unlawfully sacked already]. Dom is one of the previous news editors and is committed to the cause and has the endorsement of Save Student Direct creator James Clarke.

Read Dom’s manifesto here.

Bethan Harris
Environment and Ethics Secretary

Concerned about how the union runs itself and its impact on the environment and a global scale? Then this is the lady you want to out in office. Bethan is abound with energy and has been an enthusiastic member of the PPE society since its formation last year. She has experience in a wide range of areas from drama to charity fund raising; she is a well qualified and broad minded individual.

Read Bethan’s manifesto here.

You can find all the rest of the manifestos online at the new but still crap UMSU website here.

Interesting to note is the number of World Peace Campaigners present in this years election. Many of them only seem to be campaigners since 2007. As much as I’m all for world peace, judging by the candidates who have been “campaigners”, I can’t help but think that this is just a substitute label for a combined ISoc Socialist Worker coalition. But hey, I may be wrong.

Finally, why is there a ban on electronic forms of campaigning? Surely with the advent of facebook and other social networking sites an ideal way to get people voting would start groups and debates online. “Oh no” have said the union and have gagged all candidates, which is why the wall has been removed from the Students 1st facebook profile. Ridiculous. Consequently you’re only means of finding out about candidates is from the less than great UMSU website, the cut down manifestos in Student Direct, or the crowded boards in the union foyer. A few people have talked about reform of the union, maybe it would be more if the SD editor hadn’t gagged news and opinion editors from suggesting any such idea in the paper.

PLEASE, go and VOTE.

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