Elected Officers

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Find out your Officers plans for this year and what progress they are making

Welfare & Diversity Officer Blog

Hi I’m Dan and you elected me to be your Welfare & Diversity Officer. My job is to ensure that students across all disciplines and levels of study feel that they are included and that they have a positive experience of their time here at Keele. This includes sitting on panels, running campaigns, and emphasise accessibility and inclusivity as well as deal with any problems the student body might experience personally and they need support and guidance.

Before being elected, I studied Psychology. During my time as a student I have been the President of the Psychology Society, and a student voice rep for two years. In my free time I enjoy gaming, going to the gym, volunteering with young offenders and going to the pub with friends.

Talk to me about:

  • Mental health campaigns and concerns
  • International Student Inclusivity and Diversity
  • Accessibility needs and allyship

Email me at su.welfareofficer@keele.ac.uk or contact me on social media below

 Facebook logo: Click here to be directed to Facebook profile

Want to find out more about my plans this year?

Report for the February UGM

Mature Students Network group

I, our Part-Time Officer for Mature students and the Student Experience and Support Officers have been hosting and attending mature student coffee mornings providing an opportunity for this demographic to connect with each other.

After speaking with Julie Willis, from student services, the Mature Student Network has had it’s soft launch. The network will act to group together mature students based on a range of interests, providing a better opportunity for mature students to connect across subjects.

 

Mature student Common room

I have been working with our part time officer for Mature & Parent students to organize the strategic design for the Mature student common room. I have written a proposal on how creating a socialization space would help improve connected in mature students and reduce loneliness that was exacerbated by the pandemic.

This proposal is being presented at Educational Space Strategy Group.

 

Counselling Review

I am working with the University to review the Counselling service offered at Keele. I cannot reveal all details yet however at the first meeting I requested that a service agreement statement is provided to ensure the guaranteed standard of service, that the service promotes more inclusive practice and expressed my disappointment in the new University communication policy that is preventing adequate advertisement of the counselling service at Keele.

 

Start to Success & Mental health

I am starting to look on how we can host Start to Success materials on the Students Union website and promoting the work that has been done over the last two years to students. Start to Success has helped fund my Wellbeing lounges which I hosted as part of Thankful Thursday.

As part of Feelgood Friday and Thankful Thursday I got involved with some of the mindfulness, yoga and ballet sessions whilst promoting this to students.

At a more strategic level I am working closely with Student services on counselling and how we can better ensure it is inclusive for our current student body.

 

Safer streets at night initiative

I have been working with Naomi Smith from the Staffordshire Police Commission where two rounds of funding have been awarded. One for initiatives to ensure sexual harassment and misconduct is tackled, with a second to tackle spiking in the local area.

I sit on the decision-making boards of the projects with input on how these campaigns can tackle individuals prior to coming to university but also help tailor them to university specific students.

 

Streamlining reporting

From student consultation around accessibility and barriers of reporting incidents to both Student Services & the SU, I have decided to work with the Innovation team to set up a portal for reporting unacceptable and NeverOk behaviors. The portal will be modelled off a project in Northumbia which saw low reporting rates prior to the introduction.

 

The reporting system will be integrated with the Safe Zone app to add efficiency of reporting incidents when they occur.

 

Parking issues on campus

Students submitted policy to our Union General Meeting (UGM) around parking where I hosted a student consultation meeting. Students recommended that as a Union we work to:

· Remove the 4-hour parking limit on Pay & Display parking areas.

· Introduce more Pay & Display Parking areas.

· Better plan and construct parking facilities that can realistically deal with the current student population.

· Work with First Bus to make public transport more accessible or provide a Keele owned alternative transport beneficial for students

 

This was drafted into a petition that over 180 students have signed. This petition will be delivered to the PVC for Education and Student Experience and presented at the Parking and Transport committee group.

 

Spiking joint procedure & policy

I am currently working with Resident Life to set up a joint procedure and policy around reporting incidents of spiking and the type of support that is offered for the victims of spiking. With mentions of spiking coming to the national front such policy is desired by students.

 

Sexual Misconduct policy & Not on my campus pledges.

As part of Sexual Violence Awareness Week, I am highlighting support options and where to report incidents of sexual misconduct on campus. As part of a media campaign, I will be de-bunking common rape myths that are still prevalent in society to blame and silence survivors.

 

I’ve met with the Director of Student Services to advocate for the inclusion of spiking to be included in the Sexual Misconduct Policy at the next review. Spiking is classed as a sexual offence under British law and should be explicitly mentioned in our own Sexual Misconduct Policy.

 

I have set up a donation box in the Hub on the ground floor of the SU for toiletries to be donated for the Sexual Assault Referral center.

 

On a more strategic route I have wrote to Aaron Bell to lobby for a ban on Non-disclosure agreements in bullying and sexual misconduct cases in University and work settings. I am working with the University to implement the Not On My Campus pledges. These include:

· Pledge to publish a public and regularly review a strategy plan for tackling sexual, domestic and gender-based violence and harassment across the institution.

· Pledge to undertake a prevalence survey of experience of sexual misconduct on campus.

· Pledge to work towards implementing reporting and accountability systems that are accessible, trauma-informed and survivor-centered.

· Pledge to engage with EmilyTest’s gender-based violence charter when it is widened out beyond Scotland 2022

 

 

Accommodation update

I met with Claire & Derry who have been working hard to research the possibility of changing the minifridge policy. Due to the Universities commitment to reducing the carbon footprint by 2030 this is no longer a feasible policy change.

 

Instead, we are looking into if one of the rooms can be re-purposed into long-standing accommodation blocks to offer more social and storage space.

 

LGBTQ+ History Month

As part of LGBTQ+ history month I am working to address some strategic issues. I am working to get pronouns included on Keele Cards & the provision of pronoun badges upon enrollment. I am working with our new Student Engagement coordinator to get the SU signed up to the Stonewall

index and work with the University to ensure policy is as inclusive as possible to advance the Universities rating.

 

I am running a campaign to highlight key role models in history for the LGBTQ+ Community and how these individuals have helped fight for equality.

 

Security Re-brand:

I am doing a final student consultation with Neil from Campus security to help decide the new name for security, who want to re-brand to have a greater welfare focus. I have written a report for the proposal to be submitted to the University.

 

 

UGM Policy Updates:

 

Harm Reduction

My student mandate has allowed me to work further with the University to bring in drug purity testing kits to ensure as much safety for students who decide to engage with drugs. I will be submitting a Keele Key fund for this.

 

Image descriptions:

I have spoken with the head of Communications at the University who agreed to include image descriptions on social media posts. However, no image descriptions have been included on any posts yet.

I have further chased this up with the Director of Student services and hope this will be resolved.

 

Transgender Student support Policy:

I have discussed with our LGBTQ+ part time officer on the basis of this policy. A lot of the strategic aims of I want to achieve for LGBTQ+ history month falls under this policy such as getting pro-nouns on Keele cards, pronoun badges given during enrolment etc.

 

I am working with Tuesday, our new membership coordinator to ensure that policy at the University is as Trans-inclusive as possible to provide a safe space for students and staff. This would also improve our Stonewall index rating.

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