Log in

Sussex Represented at the NUS National Conference 2019

Riz Millanzi, Aditi Vas, Afreen Begum, Daniel Burke and May Gabriel went to Glasgow to represent the University of Sussex Students’ Union at the NUS National Conference, which was held from 9-11 April 2019. Riz and Aditi share their experience.


On Motions And Policy


“We voted for motions that would ensure equal opportunities and protections for marginalised students. In voting for these motions, we were careful to keep protections for groups as well. An example of this was when we rejected ending Rule 333, which states that a set proportion of conference attendees are women. This rule was in jeopardy because it was believed to intimidate and possibly discourage gender-neutral attendees. I agreed with the sentiment that it might intimidate gender-neutral attendees. However, I believed that the wording of the rules should be amended rather than ending the rule overall.”


“An emergency motion was put forward for the NUS to adopt the All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) definition of Islamophobia. There was also a second emergency motion condemning Anti-Semitism. I voted for both motions and they were successfully passed. We also passed a motion in solidarity with NUS - Union of Students in Ireland (NUS-USI) and their fight to protect their reproductive rights. This was despite the small ‘Pro-Life’ protest that was staged on the last day of conference by an outside group beside the [conference venue] SEC Armadillo. In addition, it is now NUS Policy that we are officially Anti-Brexit.”


On NUS Reforms


“As a result of the current financial situation, the NUS will be cutting certain budgets for the upcoming fiscal year. The defunding of the Trans Officer and campaign was a an issue that our delegation found particularly alarming. Areas most affected by budget cuts will include the Trans Campaign, the further education sector, international student support, renting help and welfare, and postgraduate funding. The NUS has admitted that with the financial issues that they are facing, they will most likely not be able to function as before.”


“The NUS Reform Motion was passed, but only after it was heavily amended. These amendments included recognising apprentices in the new structure, keeping the Liberation Officers and campaigns, retaining the Trans Campaign and ensuring we can continue to hold the executive accountable.”


On NUS Elections


We had pre-decided who we were going to vote for. However, some of the speeches swayed our original choices. I kept three things in mind when I was voting: Previous post experience, varied student experience, and policy proposals.”


“One delegate made inflammatory (and unacceptable) comments regarding Israel while on the conference floor. The same person then ran in the elections the next day. During this delegate’s election speeches, many of us, including myself and the rest of the Sussex delegation, decided to stand up and turn our backs on the candidate to show that we would not stand for this behaviour at the conference.

I was honoured to make the trip up to Glasgow and attend the conference, representing the views of students at the University of Sussex. This was my first NUS National Conference - and hopefully not my last. Thank you so much for allowing me to represent you!”


Contact us

Got a comment/criticism about anything discussed in this article? Let us know on our social media channels!




Related news

Limelight: The new Undergraduate Journal

Tue 10 Dec 2019

As part of his manifesto, Chris Harding, the Undergraduate Education Officer, pledged to set up the journal as a way to highlight the work of undergraduates at Sussex and help them with their future careers.

Winners! | Love Your Neighbourhood Competition

Mon 02 Dec 2019

Group of students from Roots sitting in the Roots garden

This student group gets £500 toward their good work. And the winner is...

Student Reps | Recent progress

Thu 21 Nov 2019

Find out about the latest progress made by your Student Reps to improve campus life.

UCU strike action | Latest info for students

Tue 19 Nov 2019

Everything you need to know about the industrial action taking place from Monday, 25 November to Wednesday, 4 December.

Vote for your favourite project

Fri 15 Nov 2019

Voting is now open - £500 to the best student community project.


This list is automatically generated

View all news »