JCR Meeting Agenda
18.30., Cuth’s Bailey Bar, 11th Feb 2014
1. Apologies and Absences
2. Minutes from the previous meeting
v. Outreach Officer (formerly Livers Out Rep)
vi. Social Chair
ix. Sports and Socs Chair
x. PG Rep
xi. International Rep
5. Motions- Election Rules, Volleyball Club
6.Positions to be elected:
INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS REP
OUTREACH COMMITTEE CHAIR
POSTGRADUATE AND MATURE STUDENTS REP
SENIOR DSU REP
SPORTS AND SOCIETIES CHAIR
ASSISTANT BAR STEWARDS (Brooks/Bailey)
x1 FINANCE COMMITTEE MEMBER
POSTGRADUATE INTERNATIONAL REP
7. Any other Business
8. Thank God Van Mildert Didn’t want me
1. Apologies and Absences
Apologies – EH and GC
Absent – CA
2. Minutes from the previous meeting
Are online and were passed on a general aye
- Outreach Officer (MT) –
I am in the process of getting the ball rolling with an Outreach Committee, and am in contact with the representatives for DUCK and the SCA to ensure the committee is as effective and efficient as possible.
I am in contact with a small number of students who are looking to find housemates for next year, and those seeking help with finding a house. I’d encourage anybody still looking to get in contact if they need any help, and to join up to Cuth’s Meet a Housemate on Facebook to find housemates if necessary. The Union are still providing their contract checking service and this is strongly recommended before signing.
Finally I’m trying to find out more information from Durham Student’s Union on their elusive Community Committee, which was advertised last term but is yet to have any other information published. I’m keen to join in order to represent the views of those who live on the Viaduct, but so far no information is being provided on the existence or running of said committee. The search continues.
- Welfare Officers (EH & LT) –
The Sexual Violence Awareness Week was a great success. The symposium was really well attended, with a great discussion afterwards. Thanks to all those who came and also a massive thank you to Professor RP. The charity pub quiz also went well, and we raised £36 for The Meadows, a charity designed to help victims of sexual abuse.
As EH is now in summative Hell, LT will be taking a lead with the campaign weeks. The first campaign week is the Durham SU “”Respect Irrespective””, running from the 17th-23rd Feb. We are waiting on the student union to finalise their plans and provide us with materials in order to carry out the event. One plan we have is to get Cuth’s teams to sign the equality charter.
Cuth’s campaign week, Mental Health Awareness Week will be taking place on the 24th Feb -2nd of March. Currently, there is only one confirmed plan of a joint symposium with the SCR on the topic of Mental Health Stigma.
- Vice-President (MF) –
The stash order has been sent, and should be delivered at the end of this week, so I’ll send round an email when it arrives about where to pick it up from. Other than that, still attempting to make the newsletters more interesting, though progress is slowed by my lack of technological ability.
- Librarian (HR) –
The library is starting to get busier again and I’ve had a few book requests. Generally speaking the computer room is much busier than the library, although there are still issues with certain computers not working or not connecting to the printer.
MF’s book arrived, very exciting.
Despite all my beautiful signs the fridge isn’t getting a great deal of action, but from what I can tell people are using the tea and coffee. I’m going to try and acquire some mugs, as polystyrene cups are wasteful and also make stuff taste weird. The dragon (Ben jr. to his friends) seems to have settled down now and is still yet to cause any distress or damage, so it doesn’t look like an exterminator will be required. On the contrary, students are beginning to look up to him (both literally and figuratively), and with his new found interest in current affairs he might prove to be a positive influence (This is an unnecessary detail in the report-Pres).
- Postgraduate and Mature Students’ Rep (HLE) –
The first Research Forum of the term was held last week, and was well attended by both UGs and PGs. Both speakers gave very interesting and thought-provoking talks and there was a good discussion following. We are in the stages of finalising the organisation of a Reading Group, also open to all students, and details will be released soon. Anna Green, the PG Social rep, is organising our Inter-MCR formal, to take place on 12th March. We are finalising the price of tickets, as we are hoping to offer a drinks reception and a port/cheese course after dinner. Entertainment is being provided by Cuth’s Big Band. We are also discussing with the college the possibility of hosting lunches for mature students. Finally I am currently reviewing the possibility of increasing the postgraduate budget in order to more accurately represent postgraduate involvement within the JCR and college, and as a way to supplement activities and events for postgraduates over the summer.
- Senior DSU Rep (CO) –
For candidates wishing to run for a sabbatical officer role, nominations open on Thursday 13 February, 9amand close on Friday 21 February, 5pm. You will then receive training and advice before campaigning and voting starts on the first week of March. At the Assembly meeting on the 30th, there was a motion to open up the membership of the mature students association to everyone which was passed. Also another motion was passed for the union to actively petition and encourage the University to ensure that all its full-time workers, are paid a Living Wage of £7.35 per hour; this would be implemented to those who do not already receive it. It has been passed that at least 50% of members must attend the committee meetings for any decision to be legitimately passed; Quoracy has to be reached. It has been noted that last year 7.45% of all exams have errors in them; however 88% of these exams are from the physics, business and sciences department. The union hopes to change this trend and try to pressure the main department’s to improve their conduct. Finally, the student officer’s plans where approved and so were the different committee plans.
- Sports and Societies Chair (RR) –
Since the last meeting I have met with EA and we are in the process of organising a formal for societies after exams to coincide with the awarding of colours. I have also written up my Societies Document that will be distributed very shortly.
viii. Social Chair (GC) –
We held an event at Wiff Waff which was mixed. The ping pong and beer pong tournament worked out really well, and thanks to RR for organising that. However, there is an ongoing dispute over finances and the level of service we received, something we were very disappointed about.
We are now in the final stage of prep for the Feast of St Cuthbert which will be held on February 21. Tickets went live at 1800 today and I’d encourage you all to come down and support the event. You can buy tickets atwww.cuths.com/tickets. For more details of the event go towww.cuths.com. Thanks to all those from social committee and the bar who have assisted so far.
I am also looking to the Military Formal that will be held on February 19, and we are delighted to have such a big presence from the Durham tri-service community as well as from regional units. If you are a serving or retired member of the armed forces then please get in contact with me if you would like to attend. I apologise in advance for the behaviour of the Royal Marines.
I am beginning planning for Cuth’s Day, which will be held on June 21. More details will be released closer to the event. If you are interested in getting involved either in planning the event or in performing on the day then please get in touch with me either via Facebook or by emailing me firstname.lastname@example.org.
ix. Treasurer (BH) –
The quarterly VAT books have been submitted to HMRC on time. Substantial levels of savings on tax has been achieved – many thanks to the work of the Social Chair, GC, in implementing tax-efficient events by which the JCR as a whole benefits. I have created a new invoice template and system by which we can now efficiently and easily invoice other colleges, companies and persons in line with the legal requirements. The Finance Committee has met twice more to process substantial levels of JCR income – their support and perseverance throughout this and last term is welcome. Further day-to-day running of the financial aspects of the JCR continues with good levels of efficiency. A 2014/5 handover document for the future Treasurer-elect is being developed as are further developments of current forms and filing procedures. We also look forward to the potential of incorporating a potential annual alumnus’ donation into the budget.
x. International Students’ Rep (CA) –
5. Motions – Election Rules, Volleyball Club
The Updated Election Rules Motion
THIS JCR NOTES
The election rules were last officially reviewed in 2008
Changes in technology since then mean that candidates want to campaign in new ways
The society doesn’t currently occupy 26 South Bailey
THIS JCR BELIEVES
Senior Returning Officers interpret the rules differently each year
No explicit rules on the use of social media leaves a lot to the discretion of the SRO
Explicit rules make elections fairer by setting an agreed boundary that is adhered to year on year
THIS JCR RESOLVES
To reduce the total number of posters required to 19 as there is no need for one in 26 South Bailey
To amend the election rules clause 1.4 Telecommunications to read as follows:
◦ 1.4 Telecommunications and Social Media▪ Individually addressed Emails and other such private messages that encourage voting for a particular candidate are permitted▪ Mass messages (in the form of statuses, tweets and similar) are permitted to be posted to the effect that voting is open. No references to individual candidates are allowed within this, nor within associated comments▪ The candidate must not allow anyone to mass campaign on their behalf online. Any instances of such should be reported to the SRO. Failure to report where reasonable, or support of any such material from the candidate (i.e. ‘liking’) will be sanctioned.▪ The candidate may not post about the elections in any groups affiliated with the Society or University, regardless of their privacy setting◦ To amend the election rules clause 1.5 Other Forms of Campaigning to include
That standing comm should review the rules in the first meeting of Michaelmas term
◦ The President, the President Elect, the JCR Chair, the Senior Returning Officer, and the incumbent of the relevant position may not propose or second a candidate, nor expose preference in any way
Proposed by: LM
Seconded by: MT
CP – It has been pointed out that this does not have to be authorised by a JCR Meeting, the changes just have to be agreed by Standing Comm, who have already looked over the suggestions and found them to be in order. Therefore this is withdrawn as a motion.
The Volleyball Club Motion
This JCR notes The lack of a society dedicated to volleyball
The desire of several Cuth’s students to play volleyball
The ability of students to create societies and clubs for the benefit of students of the society
There is an ongoing college league in which a team from Cuth’s is participating
This JCR believes The students of St. Cuthbert’s society would benefit from a society dedicated to playing volleyball socially and competitivelyThe existing team requires finacial support from the JCR to train and remain in the league
This JCR resolvesTo create a Volleyball Society for Cuth’s students to participate in
To appoint JC as Cuth’s Volleyball Acting President until someone is formally elected
To allocate £30 to Cuth’s Volleyball for this year to pay for the £30 entrance fee to the college league.
To allocate a further £60 as a one time startup cost to buy some volleyballs for the team to train with
that every member of the volleyball team must pay a minimum £1 subscription fee before they are allocated the proposed budget in accordance with the standing orders
Proposed by: JC
Seconded by: MC, RS, HM, AC, KH, AS, PP, AB, JH, SL, JA, SG, AK, KR
JC – We have 19 people interested in playing. We have already started playing league games and won our first match. However, we need volleyballs to train with.
BH – How much will subs be and what will they be used for?
JC – I have no idea how much they will be or what they will be used for. I only included them because I was told I had to.
KME – How much does a volleyball cost?
JC – £15 each.
No amendments. No opposition. Motion passed on a General Aye.
6. Positions to be elected:
The husts were videoed and may be viewed online at http://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLSh0YPB_5byGB6EgdPnALIpjKrrJq9nLW [broken link]
CHAIR – 3 candidates (MC, LM and RON)
INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS REP – No candidates
OUTREACH COMMITTEE CHAIR – 2 candidates (AH and RON)
POSTGRADUATE AND MATURE STUDENTS REP – No candidates
SENIOR DSU REP – 3 candidates (EE, AH and RON)
SOCIAL CHAIR – 2 candidates (RR and RON)
SPORTS AND SOCIETIES CHAIR – No candidates
ASSISTANT BAR STEWARDS (Brooks/Bailey) – No candidates
TREASURER – 2 candidates (MF and RON)
x1 FINANCE COMMITTEE MEMBER – 2 candidates (MH and RON) MH was elected by an overwhelming majority
POSTGRADUATE INTERNATIONAL REP – 2 candidates (QW and RON) QW was elected by an overwhelming majority
7. Any other Business
Straw Poll – Should a panel vet candidates for exec roles before they are allowed to hust?
SC – This is basically to ask whether people think candidates should be interviewed before standing for an exec position.
CR – Would they be interviewed before or after the election?
SC – Before
MT – Why is this being suggested?
CP – It means that unsuitable candidates will not be elected simply because they are unopposed, people will be more informed about the role. On the other hand people might be put off by the vetting. Should there be full vetting from the panel or simply comments?
SC – Should the college be involved or just the incumbent exec? If it is just the exec then it might be too clique-y, but it might also give the college too much influence.
LM – It is less democratic.
JS – What if vetting leaves no option? Also if it is done by the exec then they might influence the outcome of the election.
MT – The President is not allowed to propose or second so that they cannot influence anything.
LT – There is always the option of RON.
JS – How about an informal meeting with the exec, not a formal interview?
CP – That would avoid the issue of not understanding the role.
MT – That puts extra time pressure on the exec.
LM – Make it compulsory for candidates to contact the incumbent?
CP – Are there any suggestions?
LM – Candidates should have to contact the current incumbent before running.
Vote on – The SRO will write a motion to make it compulsory for all candidates to contact the incumbent before running for a position.
8. Thank God Van Mildert Didn’t want me
Oh, when I started at Cuthbert’s I was sober and reserved,
I’d worked hard to get to Durham for a place that I deserved,
They put me into Cuthbert’s and I joined the JCR,
And now I’m drinking nightly in the bar, 2, 3, 4…
(Chorus) Thank God Van Mildert didn’t want me (x3)
So I ended up in Cuth’s in the South Bailey
I got a place at formal but I had nothing to wear,
It was hard to understand why there was noting everywhere,
And when we had dessert it seemed no cutlery was there,
Thank god the bar is open down at Cuth’s, 2, 3, 4…
I’ve been to lots if sporting clubs and joined societies,
I go to all social events to spend my uni fees,
And meanwhile I am striving to procure a good degree,
Thank god the bar is open down at Cuth’s, 2,3, 4…
They say my time at Cuth’s will be the making of me yet;
To fill each day it’s fullest so there’s nothing I regret.
But with each thing I take in there’s another I forget!
Thank God the bar is open down at Cuth’s!
(Slower) And now the time has come for me to leave this wonderful place,
To go into the big wide world and fall flat on my face,
But I’ll be back each Cuth’s Day just to see all my old mates,
And get pissed again down in Cuth’s, 2,3,4 …