Following the news that candidates were able to start campaigning from today (Monday 12th) as opposed to the original date, Monday 19th, some candidates have agreed not to campaign until the originally set date.
In an email sent to the Elections team by some candidates, they were told:
A lot of the candidates have expressed frustration and confusion about this decision. While we understand that not much can be done from here, we would like our voices heard so that the rest of the campaign runs as smoothly as possible.
Some candidates feel their welfare has not been prioritised, and that the changed date has now altered their original campaign schedule or their ability to use this week to plan their campaign fully.
With degrees, dissertations, jobs and everything else, elections have now become overwhelming and an extra point of stress that none of us were expecting and it is unfair to have us try to win over the student body if we can’t even take care of ourselves. Initially, we were under the impression that this was the reason for only having a 2 week campaign period.
Some candidates are concerned that they will be spread thin over the three weeks, and that the moved date benefits those with more free time and social media know how.
They also cited two SUSU by-laws:
4. Election procedures
4.3 Democracy Zone Committee will determine the exact dates of all elections in line with this Rule, at the start of the academic year, which they will approve and publicise
11. Campaigns and Hustings
11.1 Democracy Zone will determine the timings of campaigning; no candidate can begin campaigning before that date.
Candidates have organised between themselves by role as to how they will boycott, though most are allowing media interviews to be posted and for social media pages to go live – this includes all President, VP Sports, VP Engagement, VP Democracy and Creative Industries, and VP Education candidates, two of the four VP Student Communities, and five of the seven VP Welfare candidates.
All candidates for the Student Leader positions covering media outlets (Wessex Scene Editor, The Edge Editor, SUSUtv Station Manager, Surge Radio Station Manager) have agreed not to start campaigning until Monday 19th.