Interview with Joe Innes: Wellbeing Officer Candidate – Elections 2024 


Caitlyn Taft (she/her) from SCAN interviewed Joe Innes (he/him) on why he is running for Wellbeing Officer for the Students’ Union.

Joe is the current VP Welfare for County College JCR. He is a 3rd year Law student from County College.

  1. You’re currently the VP of Welfare for County College JCR, how has that role impacted your decision to run for Wellbeing Officer?

Joe told about his time in County JCR and how it has impacted his decision to run for Wellbeing Officer.

“It’s had a massive impact. The number of issues I’ve spotted made me want to run. I know how I would resolve these issues. In my time in County JCR, O’ve had people who have had issues and needed support regarding food or how to use the food banks on campus.”

  1. One of the main policy points that you state is that you want to provide mental health training for societies and JCR execs. What would that training entail? 

One of Joe’s manifesto points related to training. So, i asked him about it.

“I want to have training that revolves around mental health. The fact sheets given out by LUSU are outdated. The training needs a thorough review as it’s lacking. One of my key policies is to have an officer, mostly welfare, to be knowledgeable on mental health in societies.”

He continued:

 “I’m not asking for students to become therapists but making sure people can identify behaviour and changes in their members to help them. Having someone that students are more comfortable with means that they can go to them and that person can give out the right resources and avenues to go.”

  1. Would there be a different form of it for societies and JCR as JCRs work more closely with Students who may need that extra support? Nevertheless, the mental health of societies and their exec is very important.

Joe told me about the training in more depth.

“There’s a large overlap between societies and JCR. It’s worth looking into it for JCRs because they’re more student based. It’s important for both to know how to refer people to what resources. For societies, it’ll be focusing more on nightlife and making students aware of support outside of just the mental health service (like the colleges’ CAT teams).”

  1. What types of collaborations between the SU, JCRS, LCOs, and Forums would you like to hold? How will they be beneficial for everyone involved? 

Joe’s main point for this was to hold more meetings.

“I want to try to foster intercollegiate collabs. Right now they feel awkward and weird right now. When events happen that are collaborations, the credit is taken by the Students’ Union or it’s completely ignored. Having regular meetings means that everyone can discuss their campaigns to make everyone work better together. More regular communication to ensure that there’s no mess ups. Being told about events beforehand, like She Should Run, will help get more students involved.”

  1. How will you make LUSU Pantry and Supper Club accessible to more students?

Joe told me about his ideas on expanding them both.

“The funding that students get won’t increase. Students are dealing with inflation off 4% and accommodation prices are also really high. Everything is so expensive. I want to increase funding for LUSU Pantry and Supper Club. Maybe get better partnerships and reach out to local shops and form a relationship to buy their food that’s near the sell by date.”

  1. The concerns of accommodation prices and standards are very real worries that students are having. How do you intend on working with the LUSU President to represent these concerns on a wider scale (i.e. to the university)?

Joe talked about how the accommodation prices are a difficult issue as the university’s accommodation is owned by an outside company, which a lot of students don’t know.

“I want to raise awareness about this. I like what Cerys and Josh are currently doing about accommodation. Going to the university about this situation and fighting for students is one of my main concerns.”

  1. Many of the Welfare and Wellbeing campaigns ongoing are very useful for students. However, what is your plan to maintain the campaigns (‘Late Night Do it Right’ and ‘She Should Run’)? Do you plan on extending on the preexisting campaigns?

Joe noted that he is keen on keeping them going, adding that:

“Especially with She Should Run, I want to make sure that women are getting involved with student leadership. Everyone deserves to feel comfortable and feel supported regardless of their identity. I want to extend these preexisting campaigns. Getting more places involved with Late Night Do it Right, as it’s a social campaign I want to take it further.”

To vote for Joe Innes, you can head over to the LUSU website.

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