Read Ross’ Manifesto

 

A Chara,

 

I’m Ross (He/Him), I’m 22 and I am running for VO for Campaigns of the USI.

 

I am a seasoned activist in a wide range of issues, ensuring young people aren’t just heard in spaces, but truly listened to. I am also the VP for Community & Citizenship at DCU Students’ Union, working on issues such as accommodation, sustainability and student engagement

 

It’s direct action that is needed more than ever. Seeing students having to rely on food banks, on SUSI and Students’ Union, because of a failure of the state that refuses to fund higher education.

 

We still have the highest fees in the EU, students missing lectures because of no online resources and still huge injustices. We need to see a new way of engaging students that creates a movement of students to protest on the streets, get the change from politicians and not just envision, but create a truly radical and free higher education model for students.

 

Please do follow my campaign to learn more about what I stand for and hope to get your vote!

 

Is mise le meas,

Ross

 

Building grassroots-led campaigns

  • Establishing a followed campaigns calendar that can be shared with MOs can ensure officers can create relevant graphics, ensuring the union has timely and ready-made promotional material which can complement any actions taken, and ensure a successfully led union for the year.

 

  • Facilitate improved conversations about campaigns between MOs, that MOs can support each other, share ideas and work together and collaborate.

 

  • Having specific “office hours” to be able to be contacted solely about campaigns to be able to talk to about ideas or issues on campaigns, while also being available for any issues officers may face

 

  • Establish a monthly activist network meeting of groups who may not be part of MOs but have significant activism experience relating to third-level education and the issues facing students.

 

Building inclusive campaigns

  • A national protest is something that is simply well overdue and increase radical actions in tandem with the Campaigns WG and Campaigns Strategy Committee.

 

  • Ensuring accessibility is a cornerstone of any in-person campaigns, and improving online campaigns to allow hybrid options, as well as ensuring those online can take meaningful actions, through lobbying politicians simultaneously to those shouting on the ground.

 

  • Improving leading actions between NUS-USI and USI, and create overall consistency in messaging.

 

  • Create a focus on international students and students from different socio-economic backgrounds and ethnic minorities and work with the VP for Equality & Citizenship to be able to ensure campaigns reflect this.

Building action-led campaigns

Student Accommodation Crisis

The student accommodation crisis is one of the biggest crises that students have faced, r with many students having to commute hours, live in hotels, hostels or couch-surf, or having to sleep in their car as the only place they can afford.

 

Main actions

  • Protests across the country including on-campus protests
  • Seeing loopholes closed to allow students to be aware they can pay monthly
  • Information campaigns to empower students of their tenancy rights,
  • Continue to object to PBSA which isn’t affordable and lobby to change legislation to allow TUs build on-campus accommodation
  • Highlight the commercialisation of PBSA in both on-campus and off-campus accommodation (20 NA {NC} 8B)

Climate Crisis

While many issues can be seen as too far away from being a student issue, the climate emergency has a great impact on students, particularly those from rural backgrounds and ensuring a just transition for all students.

 

Main actions

  • Ensuring all work that USI does accounts for its carbon cost is crucial to understand the impact the organisation has
  • Continue to plan to reduce waste where possible in campaign information, promoting reusable materials where possible.
  • Continuing to protest on climate issues, such as CETA (2021 EM {CZN} 5)
  • Build work on networking with other groups and MOs through the USI Climate Action Network (2021 CZN 4)

Student Workers

Those who are working, irrespective of being a student, should be paid for their work. Yet, student nurses aren’t being fully paid for their work, a similar situation for student teachers, having to substitute in places sometimes nowhere near where they live and without and students workers but still with few rights and knowledge of their rights.

 

  • Continue to advocate to ensure that student nurses are paid at the HCA rate
  • Advocate that student teachers and nurses can work in safe and easily accessible places.
  • Run campaigns to ensure students know their workers’ rights and to improve awareness of union membership,
  • Continue to build union partnerships, including the SIPTU partnership to ensure students are empowered and can be represented as disputes.

SU autonomy and funding crisis

Students Union, especially this year, have significant issues with their universities and trust, with some facing cuts to their funding or being ignored despite what issues students face.

 

  • Ensuring that any future legislative changes reflect the issues that SUs face
  • Support MOs when threatened with funding or autonomy issues
  • Ensuring SUs in TUs are supported and secure links with local students to ensure connection with their TU SU

Higher education funding

 

When students have to fork out the highest fees in the EU, pay extra fees for the course and have to deal with the cost of living, we finally have to say “Enough is Enough”.

 

  • Removal of ALL fees, both through the Student Contribution Charge and other hidden fees.
  • Ensure a significant increase of investment in higher education in all sectors
  • Ensuring that funds towards SUs go through the HEA, rather than through colleges
  • Keep the messaging of the Cost of College consistent and F*ck The Fees

Please Contact Me

 

This role is more than just what I can do, but crucially how we can work together to achieve the change that is truly necessary for the student movement.

 

If you have any questions or suggestions about how to improve what I aim to do hopefully as VP for Campaigns, let me know!

 

All socials and full manifesto can be found at – https://linktr.ee/rpboss

 

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