Since coming back from the NUS Annual Conference, I seem to be suffering from the tiredness feeling that always seems to effect me.
I’m not going to go through 3 days worth of motions passed and policy wording, but I always think that the really controversial stuff is always what people want to read about. Jo Salmon’s blog really sums up what the main/controversial motions were at conference, so here is a copy from her site:
This was passed and as of this September, students will continue to get free membership of their studentsâ€™ union (and therefore NUS) but in order to get their discounts, theyâ€™ll have to pay ten pounds for the NUS Extra card. Some of that money will be given to the studentsâ€™ union, some will go to NUS and the rest will be used to cover the admin costs. For more information, go to www.nusextra.com
As youâ€™d expect, we had a massive debate about whether or not to boycott Coke and, in the end, conference decided to engage in constructive dialogue with Coca-Cola rather than an outright boycott.
NUS has a no-platform policy with certain groups whose views are incompatible with our commitment to equality, such as the BNP etc, as well as Hizb ut-Tahrir. A motion was put forward to this yearâ€™s conference to remove allow Hizb ut-Tahrir back into NUS but conference rejected the motion and Hizb ut-Tahrir continue to be no platformed by the national union.
Holocaust Memorial Day
Now you wouldnâ€™t think this would be controversial but there were some at conference who had a problem with HMD – and one NEC member (Jamal El-Shayyal) tried to take parts on a line mandating all members of the NEC to attend an event for HMD 2007. When proposing the deletion of this line, he said something along the lines of: â€œone death is as much of a tragedy as manyâ€. I took a speech against and conference voted with me, which was great, but I wish Iâ€™d said this in my one minute rant: â€œif one death is a tragedy, then whatâ€™s 6 million? Whatâ€™s 15 million?â€. We won with a massive margin anyway, so I donâ€™t know what Iâ€™m fussing about!
I really must thank Jo for all her support that she showed to the Jewish students during the debate on Holocaust Memorial Day. I felt sick to the teeth with the idea that a member of the National Executive had wanted to make it optional to attend an HMD event. Jo stuck up for what was right and that is greatly appreciated.