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Committee Paper Agenda Item Elections Rules and Regulations for 2016/17 Purpose

For approval

Confidentiality

Public

Strategic Alignment

The matters support the following element of the Students Union Strategy: 

Why is this body being requested to consider. Executive Summary

05h

Student Engagement + Communications

For formal approval as outlined in Bye-Law 6 of the Constitution. At the 06/06/16 meeting of the Board of Trustees, a series of recommendations were approved to improve elections practice. Key differences are: the removal of slates; compulsory campaigner registration and training; and the provision of at least 24 hours between close of voting and release of results, to enable a longer deadline for receipt of complaints and time to investigate prior to ballots being calculated. These elections will support:  

October Elections to NUS Conferences, Student Activities Executive 2016 March Elections to: Sabbatical Positions and Student Activities Executive 2017/18

For reference the 2015/16 rules and regulations are attached at the end of this paper. Draft Resolution & Recommendation

Committee Members are invited to:    

Sponsor(s) Date Paper Ref / Location

Approve the rules and regulations for the elections in the academic year 2016/17 Approve Lydia Blundell as the Deputy Returning Officer for the academic year 2016/17 Approve Peter Robertson, NUS, as the Returning Officer for the academic year 2016/17 Receive the elections timetable for the academic year 2016/17.

Lydia Blundell, Head of VIA 05/08/2016 /mnt/tmp/rs/170113142524-3fdd659c19942eac2b642d90824adf8c/original.file


October Election Rules and Regulations It is impossible to provide a set of rules and regulations that cover every potential scenario that could happen during an election campaign. When investigating conduct, incidents or complaints, the Deputy Returning Officer and Returning Officer will make a judgement based on the ethos expressed in Byelaw 6, Section 7.1 of the Union’s Constitution: 7.1 All candidates must conduct themselves in a manner that reflects the values of the Students’ Union, our equal opportunities policy, and the code of conduct of the University. If in doubt, we advise you to run your campaign ideas (in complete confidence) past the Deputy Returning Officer before you put them into action. 1. General 1.1 The elections will be overseen by the Returning Officer, who will be provided by the NUS. The Returning Officer will delegate responsibility to the Deputy Returning Officer, who will be a senior member of Students’ Union staff. 1.2 Both individuals are empowered to investigate any matters related to the election, infringement of election rules or complaints regarding candidate conduct. If he or she finds that there has been an infringement they may: i. ii. iii. iv. v.

Warn the candidate that any future infringement will result in a fine or disqualification Fine the candidate from and up to the maximum of his or her publicity budget; Restrict campaigning; Provide a sanction to the candidate; Disqualify the candidate.

1.3 All candidates must attend a compulsory briefing session with the Deputy Returning Officer. All campaigners must confirm they have read and received a compulsory briefing sheet from the Deputy Returning Officer 1.4 Names will appear on ballot papers as per the University registration. In cases where a shorter form or alternative is used, dispensation may be granted at the Deputy Returning Officer’s discretion. 2. Campaigning 2.1 Permission must be obtained from the University before placing any posters/banners etc. around the campus. This can usually be obtained from School Offices or from the Estates Department. Candidates must ensure that all publicity is removed from campus within one hour of voting closing. 2.2 Campaigning is strictly forbidden in the Faith Centre and in the Library. Any candidate or campaigner found campaigning in either of these locations could face a warning, a sanction or disqualification.

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2.3 Candidates and members of their campaign team must allow voters the opportunity to cast their vote in private, and under no circumstances must votes be cast on a voter’s behalf. Any students experiencing issues while voting should be referred to a member of SU Staff. 2.4 All campaigners will need to register as a candidate supporter have their photo taken by the SU, be a current student and campaign wearing an identification lanyard. 2.5 Voting will be open between the hours of:  Tuesday 4th October, 10am – 9pm  Wednesday 5th October, 8am – 4pm. 2.6 Candidates must attend a compulsory debrief meeting with the Deputy Returning Officer on Wednesday 5th October, and then remove all posters/banners etc. from campus within two hours of voting closing. 3. Election Resource Packs 3.1 To ensure that as many candidates as possible can take part in the elections, all candidates for all part-time roles will be provided with the following resources where possible: i. ii. iii.

Unlimited supply (where possible) of “Vote Now” leaflets 15 x A3 colour posters 300 x A6 black and white leaflets with candidates branding (choice of coloured paper)

All publicity for printing must be handed in to the Student Voice Team by the 30 th September. 4. Finances 4.1 In addition to the resources provided in the election resource packs, candidates for all part-time roles are allowed to spend up to £25 of their own money on campaign resources (non-refundable). 4.2 Candidates must provide a clear, itemised breakdown of all costs associated to their campaign 4.3 Expenditure forms (including all receipts) must be submitted to the Deputy Returning Officer by 9am Thursday 6th October. Any queries will be investigated as required. These will be published online. 4.4 Candidates may not accept monetary or material sponsorship from any source to assist with their campaign that would not have been available to other candidates. Failure to adhere to this may result in disqualification. 5. Slates 5.1 Candidates must not form a team with other candidates to run a joint campaign. This includes having joint branding, names or posters.

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6. Complaints 6.1 All complaints must be submitted within 24 hours of the alleged incident, via the official online complaints form, and will include the following information: i. ii. iii. iv. v. vi.

Name and contact details of person making complainant (anonymous complaints will not be considered) Name of person being complained about Details of incident (including time and date) Details of any witnesses Details of which rules have been broken Details of the action requested

6.2 All complaints will be investigated by the Deputy Returning Officer, who will consider the evidence and make an appropriate decision. This ruling will be communicated to all parties involved and included in the annual Returning Officer’s Elections Report. 6.3 Any decisions made by the Deputy Returning Officer can be appealed within 24 hours of the decision via a written statement to the Returning Officer (and must include grounds for the original decision being un-just). 6.4 Any decisions made by the Returning Officer are final. 6.5 All complaints must be received within 24 hours of voting closing. Any complaints considered after this time will not be investigated as part of the elections process (although they may be considered under the provision of Byelaw Nine of the Students’ Union Constitution). 6.6 Sanctions available to the Deputy Returning Officer include, but are not limited to, bans from campaigning for an allocated period of time, public statements of sanction by Students’ Union via website and social media, and confiscation of campaign materials.

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March Election Rules and Regulations It is impossible to provide a set of rules and regulations that cover every potential scenario that could happen during an election campaign. When investigating conduct, incidents or complaints, the Deputy Returning Officer and Returning Officer will make a judgement based on the ethos expressed in Byelaw 6, Section 7.1 of the Union’s Constitution: 7.1 All candidates must conduct themselves in a manner that reflects the values of the Students’ Union, our equal opportunities policy, and the code of conduct of the University. If in doubt, we advise you to run your campaign ideas (in complete confidence) past the Deputy Returning Officer before you put them into action. 1. General 1.1 The elections will be overseen by the Returning Officer, who will be provided by the NUS. The Returning Officer will delegate responsibility to the Deputy Returning Officer, who will be a senior member of Students’ Union staff. 1.2 Both individuals are empowered to investigate any matters related to the election, infringement of election rules or complaints regarding candidate conduct. If he or she finds that there has been an infringement they may: vi. vii. viii. ix. x.

Warn the candidate that any future infringement will result in a fine or disqualification Fine the candidate from and up to the maximum of his or her publicity budget; Restrict campaigning; Provide a sanction to the candidate; Disqualify the candidate.

1.3 All candidates must attend a compulsory briefing session with the Deputy Returning Officer. All campaigners must confirm they have read and received a compulsory briefing sheet from the Deputy Returning Officer 1.4 All Full-Time Officer candidates must sign a declaration form confirming their eligibility to be a Trustee, failure to do so will result in their automatic removal from the elections process. 1.5 Names will appear on ballot papers as per the University registration. In cases where a shorter form or alternative is used, dispensation may be granted at the Deputy Returning Officer’s discretion. 2. Campaigning 2.1 Permission must be obtained from the University before placing any posters/banners etc. around the campus. This can usually be obtained from School Offices or from the Estates Department. Candidates must ensure that all publicity is removed from campus within one hour of voting closing.

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2.2 Campaigning is strictly forbidden in the Faith Centre and in the Library. Any candidate or campaigner found campaigning in either of these locations could face a warning, a sanction or disqualification. 2.3 Candidates and members of their campaign team must allow voters the opportunity to cast their vote in private, and under no circumstances must votes be cast on a voter’s behalf. Any students experiencing issues while voting should be referred to a member of SU Staff. 2.4 All campaigners will need to register as a candidate supporter have their photo taken by the SU, be a current student and campaign wearing a lanyard. 2.5 Voting will be open between the hours of:  Monday 6th March, 10am – 9pm  Tuesday 7th March, 8am – 9pm  Wednesday 8th March, 8am – 4pm. 2.6 Candidates must attend a compulsory debrief meeting with the Deputy Returning Officer on Wednesday 8th March, and then remove all posters/banners etc. from campus within two hours of voting closing. 3. Election Resource Packs 3.1 To ensure that as many candidates as possible can take part in the elections the following resources will be made available upon request to all candidates for Officer Roles, when we are electing them. i. ii. iii. iv. v. vi. vii. viii. ix. x. xi. xii. xiii.

Unlimited supply (where possible) of “Vote Now” leaflets 25 x A3 colour posters 400 x A6 black and white leaflets with candidates branding (choice of coloured paper) 1 x Candidate t shirt 5 x Campaigner t-shirts 1 x large white fabric banner 1 x tube of paint 1 x tube of glue Assorted rolls of tape 1 x ball of string 1 x pack of A4 white paper 1 x pack of marker pens 1 x pack of blue tack

All publicity for printing must be handed in to the Student Voice Team by the 27 th February. 4. Finances 4.1 In addition to the resources provided in the election resource packs, candidates for Officer Roles are allowed to spend up to £75 of their own money on campaign resources (non-refundable). 4.2 Candidates must provide a clear, itemised breakdown of all costs associated to their campaign 6


4.3 Expenditure forms (including all receipts) must be submitted to the Deputy Returning Officer by 9am Thursday 6th March. Any queries will be investigated as required. These will be published online. 4.4 Candidates may not accept monetary or material sponsorship from any source to assist with their campaign that would not have been available to other candidates. Failure to adhere to this may result in disqualification. 5. Slates 5.1 Candidates must not form a team with other candidates to run a joint campaign. This includes having joint branding, names or posters. 6. Complaints 6.1 All complaints must be submitted within 24 hours of the alleged incident, via the official online complaints form, and will include the following information: vii. viii. ix. x. xi. xii.

Name and contact details of person making complainant (anonymous complaints will not be considered) Name of person being complained about Details of incident (including time and date) Details of any witnesses Details of which rules have been broken Details of the action requested

6.2 All complaints will be investigated by the Deputy Returning Officer, who will consider the evidence and make an appropriate decision. This ruling will be communicated to all parties involved and included in the annual Returning Officer’s Elections Report. 6.3 Any decisions made by the Deputy Returning Officer can be appealed within 24 hours of the decision via a written statement to the Returning Officer (and must include grounds for the original decision being un-just). 6.4 Any decisions made by the Returning Officer are final. 6.5 All complaints must be received within 24 hours of voting closing. Any complaints considered after this time will not be investigated as part of the elections process (although they may be considered under the provision of Byelaw Nine of the Students’ Union Constitution). 6.6 Sanctions available to the Deputy Returning Officer include, but are not limited to, bans from campaigning for an allocated period of time, public statements of sanction by Students’ Union via website and social media, and confiscation of campaign materials. Committee Members are invited to: Approve the rules and regulations for the elections in the academic year 2016/17

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Appointment of the Returning Officer & Deputy Returning Officer Peter Robertson is acting on behalf of the National Union of Students as the Returning Officer for the academic year 2016/17. Lydia Blundell, Head of Voice, Insight, and Advice, is the Deputy Returning Officer for the academic year 2016/17. Committee Members are invited to: Approve Lydia Blundell as the Deputy Returning Officer for the academic year 2016/17 Approve Peter Robertson, NUS, as the Returning Officer for the academic year 2016/17

Elections Timetable

October Elections 22nd August 2016 27th September 2016 28th, 29th, 30th September 2016 4th October 2016, 10am 5th October 2016, 5pm 6th October 2016

Nominations Open Nominations Close Candidate Briefing Voting Opens Voting Closes Results

March Elections 10th October 2016 20th February 2017 20th February 2017 6th March 2017, 10am 8th March 2017, 5pm 9th March 2017

Nominations Open Nominations Close Candidate Briefing Voting Opens Voting Closes Results Committee Members are invited to:

Receive the elections timetable for the academic year 2016/17.

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Appendix 1

2015/16 Elections Rules and Regulations It is impossible to provide a set of rules and regulations that cover every potential scenario that could happen during an election campaign. When investigating conduct, incidents or complaints, the Deputy Returning Officer and Returning Officer will make a judgement based on the ethos expressed in Byelaw 6, Section 7.1 of the Union’s Constitution: 7.1 All candidates must conduct themselves in a manner that reflects the values of the Students’ Union, our equal opportunities policy, and the code of conduct of the University. If in doubt, we advise you to run your campaign ideas (in complete confidence) past the Deputy Returning Officer before you put them into action. 1. General 1.1 The elections will be overseen by the Returning Officer, who will be provided by the NUS. The Returning Officer will delegate responsibility to the Deputy Returning Officer, who will be a senior member of Students’ Union staff. 1.2 Both individuals are empowered to investigate any matters related to the election, infringement of election rules or complaints regarding candidate conduct. If he or she finds that there has been an infringement they may: i. ii. iii. iv.

Warn the candidate that any future infringement will result in a fine or disqualification Fine the candidate from and up to the maximum of his or her publicity budget; Disqualify the candidate. Provide a sanction to the candidate

1.3 All candidates must attend a compulsory briefing session with the Deputy Returning Officer. 1.4 Names will appear on ballot papers as per the University registration. In cases where a shorter form or alternative is used, dispensation may be granted at the Deputy Returning Officer’s discretion. 2. Campaigning 2.1 Permission must be obtained from the University before placing any posters/banners etc. around the campus. This can usually be obtained from School Offices or from the Estates Department. Candidates must ensure that all publicity is removed from campus within one hour of voting closing. 2.2 Campaigning is strictly forbidden in the Faith Centre and in the Library. 2.3 Candidates and members of their campaign team must allow voters the opportunity to cast their vote in private, and under no circumstances must votes be cast on a voter’s behalf.

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3. Election Resource Packs 3.1 To ensure that as many candidates as possible can take part in the elections, all candidates for Exec roles, when we are electing them, will be provided with the following resources where possible: i. ii. iii. iv. v. vi. vii. viii. ix. x. xi. xii. xiii.

Unlimited supply (where possible) of “Vote Now” leaflets 25 x A3 colour posters 400 x A6 black and white leaflets with candidates branding (choice of coloured paper) 5 x coloured t shirts of the candidates choice 1 x pack of iron on transfer paper 1 x large white fabric banner 1 x tube of paint 1 x tube of glue Assorted rolls of tape 1 x ball of string 1 x pack of A4 white paper 1 x pack of marker pens 1 x pack of blue tack

3.2 To ensure that as many candidates as possible can take part in the elections, all candidates for all other roles will be provided with the following resources where possible: i. ii. iii. iv. v. vi. vii. viii. ix. x. xi.

Unlimited supply (where possible) of “Vote Now” leaflets 15 x A3 colour posters 200 x A6 black and white leaflets with candidates branding (choice of coloured paper) 1 x large white fabric banner 1 x tube of paint 1 x tube of glue Assorted rolls of tape 1 x ball of string 1 x pack of A4 white paper 1 x pack of marker pens 1 x pack of blue tack

All publicity for printing must be handed in to the Student Voice Team by the published date. 4. Finances 5.1 In addition to the resources provided in the election resource packs, candidates for Exec Officer are allowed to spend up to £75 of their own money on campaign resources (non-refundable). 5.2 In addition to the resources provided in the election resource packs, candidates for all other roles are allowed to spend up to £25 of their own money on campaign resources (non-refundable). 10


5.3 Expense forms (including all receipts) must be submitted to the Deputy Returning Officer within 1 hour of voting closing for approval. Any queries will be investigated as required. 5.4 Candidates may not accept monetary or material sponsorship from any source to assist with their campaign that would not have been available to other candidates. Failure to adhere to this may result in disqualification. 5. Slates 5.5 Candidates may, if they wish, form a team with other candidates to run a joint campaign. This is known as a slate. 5.6 Each slate must nominate an individual candidate who is responsible for registering the slate, its candidates and the name with the Students’ Union before a specified date. 5.7 Receipts for all candidates’ part of a slate must be handed in by the lead candidate to the Students’ Union before the close of voting. 5.8 If standing as part of a slate, the spending allowance will be decreased proportionately depending on the number of people on the slate: 

Each additional person: reduction of total spend by £50, unless they are running for part time positions then the reduction is only £20.

5.9 Although candidates are responsible for their own actions, slates may be held accountable jointly for their actions. 5.10 Slates may not use the branding, name or title of a slate that existed in the previous two academic years. A list of these names and titles will be provided at the candidates briefing. 6. Complaints 6.1 All complaints must be submitted within 24 hours of the alleged incident, via the official online complaints form, and will include the following information: i. ii. iii. iv. v. vi.

Name and contact details of person making complainant (anonymous complaints will not be considered) Name of person being complained about Details of incident (including time and date) Details of any witnesses Details of which rules have been broken Details of the action requested

6.2 All complaints will be investigated by the Deputy Returning Officer, who will consider the facts and make an appropriate decision. This ruling will be communicated to all parties involved and included in the annual Returning Officer’s Elections Report.

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6.3 Any decisions made by the Deputy Returning Officer can be appealed via a written statement to the Returning Officer (and must include factual information as to why the original decision is considered un just). 6.4 Any decisions made by the Returning Officer are final. 6.5 All complaints must be received within one hour of voting closing. Any complaints considered after this time will not be investigated as part of the elections process (although they may be considered under the provision of Byelaw Nine of the Students’ Union Constitution). 6.6 Sanctions available to the Deputy Returning Officer include, but are not limited to, bans from campaigning for an allocated period of time, public statements of sanction by Students’ Union via website and social media, and confiscation of campaign materials.

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SU Elections 2017: Rules & Regulations