I am a current member of the Zone Committee. My job is to ensure this conference is successful, and to hold the VP to account.
I’ve been banned, up until now, from participating in this conference, making my job basically impossible.
The reason I have been banned is that, while I was on holiday visiting my girlfriend, I missed a small line at the bottom of an email. I replied as soon as I could, but not within ten working days.
More worryingly still, the person who banned me is the same person who I am supposed to hold to account.
Yesterday, people were literally put on the doors to stop me getting in. But while I was sitting outside, physically barred from entering, I thought about the other students who are barred too.
There’s a problem with NUS democracy when people are unable to do their job without meeting an impossible deadline. But more importantly, there is a problem when 40 delegates who wanted to come were turned away.
I can’t help but feel that there’s a link between on the one hand, failing to involve anyone who isn’t a sabb and can pay £145 for a conference, and on the other, losing every single major battle on education funding since 1998.
We need a mass movement, not a movement of finger buffets and nice hotel rooms.
I wish next year’s committee all the best, but NEC members shouldn’t hog everything. I’m withdrawing from this election, to spend my time mobilising a mass movement, and supporting things like the strikes happening today.
If you want to find out more about why I was prevented from attending the conference, please click here.