Dublin City University Students’ Union (DCUSU) was forced to declare invalid the results of a trio of referendums it held this week – including one on its membership of the Union of Students in Ireland – after all three failed to reach quota.
The College View this evening reported that DCUSU failed to reach quota – 10 per cent of students’ union members – on referendums that asked students to vote on restructuring the union’s sabbatical team, as well as referendums on its continued membership of USI and whether DCUSU should lobby the college to ban the sale of tobacco and e-cigarettes on campus.
DCUSU’s constitution stipulates: “For the results of a referendum to be valid at least 10% of Students’ Union members must cast valid votes.”
For these referendums to be valid, they needed a turnout of 1,762. But none of the three got close to this figure, with the highest vote count of 1,067 coming in the referendum on whether DCUSU should lobby the college on the sale of tobacco and e-cigarettes.
DCUSU campaigned for a yes vote on a change to its constitution that would have seen changes made to its sabbatical team, while remaining neutral on the other two votes.
By the time of publication, DCUSU had not responded to a request for comment by The University Times.
Last year’s sabbatical officers found themselves at the centre of a controversy over their handling of the union’s membership of USI.
In February, at a tense meeting of its council, DCUSU’s class representative council voted to change the union executive’s stance on affiliation to neutral after fears that its sabbatical officers were “undermining” democracy.
Students voted on a motion mandating that, “in the interests of fairness”, “the current executive position be neutral on the USI referendum”. The motion passed by an overwhelming majority, with only one student voting against it.