University Staff Guidance


Student Union Elections – Guidance for University Staff


  1. Election Information

The Student Union Elections are an exciting and pivotal period in the Union’s annual calendar and a key part of our core purpose.  There are a few different Elections which run throughout the academic year, but our most important are the Sabbatical Officer and Student Trustee Elections which commence in February and culminates in successful candidates being announced at the end of February or early March.  These candidates will take up positions ahead of the next academic year i.e. the February 2018/19 Elections will determine positions for the 2019/20 academic year.


A number of positions are being elected:


  • Up to 4 full-time Sabbatical Officer positions (paid)
  • Up to 4 part-time Student Trustee positions (voluntary)
  • NUS Delegate representatives for annual conference

The Students’ Union website has a wide range of information regarding the elections, the positions available and the rules for candidates.  However, if you have any specific queries, please feel free to contact the Representation & Democracy Manager, Laura Dickens at


  1. Timeframes for Main Elections

  1. Nominations Open from 28th January 2019 and close on 11th February 2019                         
  2. Campaigning from 13th February 4pm until 21st February 2019
  3. Results announced Friday 22nd February in the Centenary Room on KH
  4. Positions commence July 2019


  1. Guidance for staff


The Elections follow the ethos that all candidates must conduct themselves in a free and fair manner that reflects the values and policies of the Students’ Union and the regulations set out in the University.


  1. Complaints/Investigation

The Deputy Returning Officer, with delegated responsibility for overseeing the Elections, is Laura Dickens, Representation & Democracy Manager for the Students’ Union.  The DRO will investigate any matters related to the election, infringement of election rules or complaints regarding candidate or campaign team conduct.

All complaints must be submitted within 24 hours of the alleged infringement, via the official complaints form accessible via the Students’ Union website.


  1. Ballot Stations

During the voting period of the Elections the Students’ Union will be providing a number of physical ballot stations on campus.  These will be located on each campus for the duration of the voting period between the hours of 11-3pm.   These ballot stations will be manned by trained student staff and will be overseen by a member of the Representation & Democracy team.


  1. Restrictions

Campaigning is strictly forbidden in the following areas:

  • The Library
  • Computer Rooms

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.

Exclusion zones for campaigning will be set up around each polling station.


  1. Candidate Rules

  • Candidates must not use University or Students’ Union email lists
  •  Candidates must not place posters or banners on areas without seeking permission or receiving a stamp from the Students’ Union
  • For a full list of candidate rules please refer to the candidate regulations on the Students’ Union website.


  1. Staff Responsibilities (including all Student Union Elections)

It is important for all staff, but particularly those in student facing roles, to understand the importance of remaining neutral during the Elections and not to show favouritism towards any particular candidate.  No communications regarding the Elections should be sent out to any student or staff member which discusses any of the candidate’s manifesto points or campaign.  However, the Students’ Union would welcome and encourage the active promotion of the elections themselves and the opportunity it provides for students to undertake fulfilling leadership roles in either a paid or voluntary capacity.

The internet is now a prominent platform for campaigning.  It is therefore essential that the following guidelines are followed:

  • You should not send any email communications regarding specific candidates or any of the manifesto points for the duration of the Elections period.
  •  You should not interact with any Elections related posts by any candidates on any online platform including your personal social media accounts.
  • You must remain impartial and unbiased at all times throughout the Elections process and must not be seen to endorse or influence student opinion with any of the candidates.

For reference the official outlets are: