The much anticipated debate for Welfare and Equality officer was moderated by head of News at NSR, Dermot O’ Hare and Jack Green who is the currently the Welfare and Equality officer in the Union. Sara Elkhawad, Alana Barnett and Charlotte Boulton are the three contenders for the role, and have taken their campaign promises in different directions.
The debate largely was an explanation of the candidates manifesto points individually rather than a discussion between them. Sara’s manifesto aims for a more racially diverse NUSU, to implement sexual consent sessions in Fresher’s Week and art sessions to help student’s mental health.
Alana makes mental health her priority in her plan to implement mindfulness sessions, and in making herself available for students to contact if they need to talk about their mental health issues. Additionally she aims to set up a memorial service for students who have lost their lives whilst studying at Newcastle. Charlotte wants to see better mental health and welfare training for all personal tutors, endorsement of an app to warn others of areas where harassment is more frequent / has occurred, and reforming the PEC system so it is fairer and more sympathetic to the students who need them.
All the candidates demonstrated their passion for welfare issues within NUSU, their policies being creative and thoughtful for the improvement of the welfare of the student body, the decision depends on which issue students find most pressing for a fairer life on campus.