Remove the Students' Union's 21 Day Speakers Policy

Extra Information: 


The 21 day speakers policy has made hosting political talks and events almost impossible.

With the current political climate, many speakers have to rearrange due to changing schedules, which requires re-submission of the form and another 21 days notice. This wasn't waived during the 2019 General Election, and left the university without constructive debate and informative talks from local MPs, politicians and experts in the subject - a sharp contrast to the engagement we've had in previous years.

The policy is hindering students freedom of speech, with political societies seeing a decline in membership due to the inability to organise events that would bring in new members.

Actions Taken

  • Voting for this idea closed on 3rd February 2020.
  • This Idea has conditionally passed. Work will start on this Idea unless it is vetoed by 50%+1 of the Student Council Meeting.
  • This idea has passed through the Executive and Student Council and will go to the Trustee Board to be scrutinised.

  • April 2021: This policy is unable to be comepletely removed but has been reduced to 14 days, though the SU retain the right to requrie 21 days where the speaker may be high risk, political, or religious. This idea has been marked as a win.


Megan Griffiths
2:50am on 24 Feb 20 As a committee member of UWE debating (Press Sec/ social media manager.) I agree that this has really limited event plans which could have brought in external speakers. I would also like to point out that some of our committee essentially rage quit due to this policy and how it was brought about without true prior notice within the summer months. I have tried to set up other ways that students can benefit form joining debating society but we have had a drop in members and even orgainsing student speaker events has been stunted due to apathy or lack of engagement. As the president of the society next year I would like to return debating to its former glory and provide more frequent debates with external speakers and provide a necessary platform for freedom of speech. This year due to my current committee position I view thay I had essentially become the face of the society so that I could reach out to people or respond to questions posed to the page. It is an added burden on any committee to have to be thinking so far in advance for events as essentially we are giving up our free time for a society we love and want to see do well. This can only happen by removing unnecessary time constraints the SU sets as we have lives too and need to be considering our own study schedules, if we are having to wait a month to set up an event it is stressful to not know if we have any of our own external pressures that could affect our degree or society. I would like to thank whoever made this motion and hope it passes at student council or at least a compromise is made.
Dren Ahmeti
1:38pm on 2 Feb 20 I feel that there is no need for the University to be given such long notice. This is stifling debate.
Sadie Trent
2:57pm on 1 Feb 20 Arranging events is difficult, what if the SU could offer a compromise of say 7 days. I suggested that to people in other societies and they thought that was fair
Molly Russell
6:42pm on 21 Jan 20 It would be such a shame to lose the hard work previous student's put in to build up these societies and create such a fantastic and diverse political culture at the university.
Jack Fifield
8:15pm on 13 Jan 20 Arranging events requiring this much notice is incredibly stressful and leads to missed opportunities.
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