I would –
As President of Durham’s Students with Disabilities Association (SwDA), and as Vice President for two years before that, I’ve seen the obstacles and discrimination disabled students face every day. From not being able to physically access lecture theatres to lecturers refusing to use lecture capture to the detriment of disabled students, and the wider student body, institutional disablism is rampant at Durham. Recent news stories such as that of the visually impaired student forcibly removed from Oxford Union, have brought to wider public attention what has always been experienced by the disabled student community – discrimination and prejudice against our existence, particularly at elite Universities like Durham.
Support for disabled students has decreased rapidly in recent years with further changes coming in to place next year. Being a disabled student is made unnecessarily hard by universities and government policy and I want to go to National Conference to ensure disabled students are represented by NUS and their rights fought for.
I attended the now defunct NUS Disabled Students Conference in May as an observer, so I know how NUS procedures work. NUS are famously disorganised and many first-time delegates in May were overwhelmed by the procedures and policy. Having already attended a NUS conference as well as having written and submitted motions to assembly and voted at assembly I know what I’m doing! I’m determined to fight for Liberation groups at NUS – it should be championing these underrepresented groups not removing Liberation Officers and conferences.
Vote David, Jess and Amelia!