Officer Report

Lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans* officer

Over the course of this month I have been working with the delegates to prepare and attend NUS LGBT+ Conference 2017. The point of this conference is to shape the direction of the NUS LGBT+ Campaign over the course of the next year by passing policy and networking with other LGBT* reps over the rest of the country. However, the conference this year was very poorly organised after being moved to two days instead of three which proved very detrimental to the entire conference, with very long days and not a lot of opportunity to discuss motions and policy with the other delegates. The conference was also overshadowed by factional infighting within the campaign that led to the candidate for the women’s place officer not being elected in favour of a RON (reopen nominations) campaign. This didn’t help with the general feel of the conference and after speaking with some other delegates and the Essex team, negatively impacted on our general feelings towards the LGBT+ Campaign.

I’ve also been working with members of staff to replace the sign on the gender neutral bathrooms within the SU which were recently vandalised. I’d like to reiterate to members of the SU that these bathrooms, although they are open to everyone, are a safe place for LGBT* students and the SU will not tolerate vandalism to these safe places. On a more positive note, I’ve been working with the Trans Forum over the course of this term to implement more gender neutral toilets at university and we’ve just secured our first win – we will have a gender neutral bathroom in Sub Zero in time for next academic year! The current bathroom works with a Radar key which poses some safety issues, so the new one will be getting rid of this. Watch this space as we’ll have more news about gender neutral bathrooms on campus over the course of the next year!

Over the Easter holidays there will also be a survey going round to LGBT* students – this is to gauge how the SU has performed for LGBT* students this year, and will help us represent the community better over the next year so please fill it in!

taran baragwanath

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