OUSU

Protest has shamed OUSU, not the Union

Protest has shamed OUSU, not the Union

As the visit of Marine le Pen to the Union fades into the relative distance, the ideologies of the no-platformers, claiming to act on our behalf through OUSU, must continue to be challenged. It is outdated, indefensible and hypocritical- even more so due to the fact it is espoused in all our names.

The ineffectiveness of no-platform policies at stopping ideologies they dislike should be fairly clear. They did nothing to stop the rise of the BNP in the 2010 European elections. For all that is made of the 3,000 membership requests that followed Nick Griffin’s appearance on Question Time, much more should be made of how many people surely watched the show and realised that the BNP was not a legitimate party of protest. Louis Brandeis was right to call sunlight the best disinfectant; it is only through exposing fascism for what it is – for giving it a platform from which to drown in its own poison – that we destroy this narrative with a healthy dose of truth.

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Former OUSU RO denies association with NUS vote rigging

Former OUSU RO denies association with NUS vote rigging

A former OUSU Returning Officer has dismissed claims he is “associated” with the rigging of last May’s NUS referendum, after a no-confidence motion proposed for this week’s OUSU Council accuses him of “improper” and “anti-democratic” behaviour.

Alex Walker, a third-year Chemistry student at Wadham College, described the proposed motion of no-confidence against him as a “nasty little vendetta”, as well as “factually incorrect” and “totally misleading”.

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Inaugural OUSU student awards celebrates achievement.

Inaugural OUSU student awards celebrates achievement.

Over 150 students gathered at Oxford Town Hall last week to congratulate the nominees and winners of OUSU’s new awards.

Louis Trup, OUSU President, said: “When I ran to be OUSU President, I ran with the intention of engaging and supporting students in ways OUSU hadn’t done before. I think that the student awards, which recognised the successes of student societies and other extra-curricular endeavours did just that.

“This was the first year this has been done and I hope the awards will continue for years to come, and will act as a springboard for OUSU better supporting student activities.”

Eight categories were judged, with awards given to Society of the Year, Student Innovation of the Year and Creative Piece of the Year among others.

The Outstanding Individual Contribution to Oxford Life award was won by student Marie Tidbull for her work spearheading the ‘Let’s get Disability on the List!’ campaign and, more recently, being the driving force behind the Oxford Wadham Graduate Scholarship for Disabled Students.

Marie said: “It was an honour to receive this award; a culmination of working together with great friends with great ideas. To them I am very grateful. It really is the very special and thoughtful environment and people of Wadham which has enabled these initiatives to thrive.”

Warden of Wadham College Ken Macdonald commented: “Wadham is very proud of Marie. She has raised our awareness of disability discrimination and contributed so much to our community. From campaigns to seminars to the creation of a Graduate Scholarship for Disabled Students – she has been a whirlwind. Everyone here is in her debt.”

Winner of the Cultural Society of the Year award was Oxford Jewish Society. Mikey Beder, Jewish Society President, commented: “We were thrilled to accept an award commending Oxford JSoc’s many achievements in the recent and distant past.

“I speak on behalf of former committees as well as my own when I say how delighted we are to have been acknowledged for our efforts throughout the course of the academic year in providing a diverse programme for Oxford students.

“We had the privilege of attending a fabulous evening made all the more special when to our surprise we walked away with a coveted award.”

For a full list of categories and winners, see the OUSU website.

Image: Phillip Babcock

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