LUSU constitution changes referendum

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A referendum on changes to the LUSU constitution will be voted on in Week Eight. Voting will take place on Thursday 4 March, the same date as the elections for LUSU full time executive officers – previously known as sabbatical officers.

The referendum will be to approve changes made to the Students’ Union constitution in order to comply with requirements set for LUSU to register with the Charities Commission, which Michael Payne, LUSU President, described as “vitally important.”

This involves ensuring the Trustee Board is the supreme governing body of the Students’ Union, which is a requirement of joining the Charities Commission. The board, formed a year ago, is made up of three student officer positions, six full time officers, and four external trustees, with the President of LUSU as the board’s chair.

It presides above Union Council, the Union’s policy forming body, but Payne sought to abate the suggestion that the board could interfere with policy, pledging that it “will not veto Union Council policy or political matters.”

While the modifications to the constitution are not of immediate relevance to students, with very few noticeable or political changes, it is seen as necessary for the referendum to be successful in order for LUSU to retain its charity status and the associated benefits, enabling the union to continue to receive charitable donations, for example. The constitution is believed to already be virtually compliant with the Charities Commission’s requirements, with this revision only including some minor changes.

Payne sought to stress the importance of the constitution changes being passed when he addressed Union Council in Week Six, where he talked of “going forward” and “taking a leading role” when mentioning the changes.

Although the referendum voting takes place alongside the full time executive officer elections, LUSU will run a separate campaign to promote it and to distinguish between the two events.

A referendum on changes to the LUSU constitution will be voted on in Week Eight. Voting will take place on Thursday 4 March, the same date as the elections for LUSU full time executive officers – previously known as sabbatical officers.

The referendum will be to approve changes made to the Students’ Union constitution in order to comply with requirements set for LUSU to register with the Charities Commission, which Michael Payne, LUSU President, described as “vitally important.”

This involves ensuring the Trustee Board is the supreme governing body of the Students’ Union, which is a requirement of joining the Charities Commission. The board, formed a year ago, is made up of three student officer positions, six full time officers, and four external trustees, with the President of LUSU as the board’s chair.

It presides above Union Council, the Union’s policy forming body, but Payne sought to abate the suggestion that the board could interfere with policy, pledging that it “will not veto Union Council policy or political matters.”

While the modifications to the constitution are not of immediate relevance to students, with very few noticeable or political changes, it is seen as necessary for the referendum to be successful in order for LUSU to retain its charity status and the associated benefits, enabling the union to continue to receive charitable donations, for example. The constitution is believed to already be virtually compliant with the Charities Commission’s requirements, with this revision only including some minor changes.

Payne sought to stress the importance of the constitution changes being passed when he addressed Union Council in Week Six, where he talked of “going forward” and “taking a leading role” when mentioning the changes.

Although the referendum voting takes place alongside the full time executive officer elections, LUSU will run a separate campaign to promote it and to distinguish between the two events.

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