Why Do We Need a Full-Time Women’s Officer ?

30th Nov issue WP cover images RECLAIM

Early December, on the 3rd to be exact, I will be delivering a motion I’ve been working on for the past weeks to the student forum. The forum will be calling for the women’s officer role to be moved to a full-time position.

My aim on this motion, isn’t to criticise the current full-time officer team. Far from it they’ve been working incredibly hard this year to represent the student. My aim in making the women’s officer a full-time role is to ensure that there is a fully equipped full-time position to fight for the women campaign. The role won’t hinder the full-time officer team – it can only strengthen it.

We live in a patriarchal society that systemically discriminates against women because of their gender. The women’s campaign is here to challenge this gender imbalance and that the number of elected representatives should reflect the gender split.  Throughout society women are still vastly underrepresented. For example, in the House of Commons only 29% of women sit and 25% in the House of Lords. Women only account for 8.6% of all executive roles in the FTSE Companies. 49.9% of The Student Population is female and in a society where women are still oppressed will it be in the media, in the house of commons where white males are deciding over laws to control their bodies, control how much they pay over necessities such as tampons, women representation is as important as ever.

As a part-time women’s officer, I am standing up and saying that I am not enough. Through my experience this year, I recognise that the female population deserve someone who can give dedicate a full-time role to such a cause. I am seeing all the work of other women officers (mostly full-time officers), the work they are doing to help their campus, their support and it’s unfair to Swansea university to be deprived of such a role.

My vision for the role wouldn’t be just to fight for women, the full-time role should be work with liberation groups, leading the liberation campaign. They would also focus on the importance of intersectionality.

A quote I find fitting when considering the opportunity to give liberation roles more power, “When we’re looking to make savings, why should it be already marginalized groups that have to suffer the most? After all, shouldn’t a students’ union fight social injustice, not perpetuate it?’ A remark made by the University College London Full Time Women’s Officer for 2014-2015.

If this issue interests you, if you’re reading this agreeing with many of its points – please come along to the forum to show your support for the motion. Support is needed more than ever. Should you wish to write a piece about this issue, for and against please contact me  at waterfrontunionnews@swansea-union.co.uk. I wish to make this campaign a fair one. Any question about this motion please contact me at womensofficer@swansea-union.co.uk or find me on facebook.

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