LIVEBLOG: NUS referendum results

Brace yourselves, this is about to get interesting.

affiliation anti-semitism CUSU referendum disaffiliation NUS referendum referendum results

It’s been a long and bumpy ride to get here but by 4 pm we’ll finally know whether CUSU will remain affiliated with the NUS. Until then, stay tuned while the Tab update you on all the developments right up until the results are announced. 

17.11 We’re going call that a wrap folks.

17.09 Hold that thought we have just been sent the ‘No’ campaign’s statement:

“We are delighted that Cambridge students have voted to remain affiliated to the NUS, and all the more so given the record turnout. Credit to the Yes campaign for bringing this important conversation to Cambridge. This is a mandate for national collaboration, but it is also a mandate for reform, for the NUS to tackle anti-Semitism. All of us at the No campaign urge NUS to take strong action on this issue, and on democratic reforms more generally. We need a National Union for so many reasons, but it must respond to a substantial body of students demanding change. Today, Cambridge students have given the NUS that chance.”

17.04 We’re going to wrap up this live blog with Priscilla’s statement, just released:

I am proud and encouraged by the historic levels of engagement in this referendum, and as a campaigner for continued affiliation, I am pleased that Cambridge students will continue to have a voice in shaping and changing NUS for the better.

With such high levels of engagement, this vote provides the team and I with a strong mandate to take forward the clear and legitimate concerns that Cambridge students have raised during this referendum. I have been explicit as a campaigner that NUS is far from perfect; with the confidence of Cambridge students, CUSU will continue to engage with NUS in collaboration with students’ unions across the country to ensure NUS becomes the inclusive and effective organisation students deserve.

16:27 No.

16:10 CUSU President Priscilla Mensah celebrates the victory for NUS affiliation

16:02 Provisional results state that 51.52% voted to stay affiliated with the NUS, 46.62% voted to disaffiliate and 1.86% submitted blank votes, the NUS affiliation campaign have clinched it with a lead of 300 votes.


15:56 In the  11th hour Malia urges us to stay

15:50 Election season can bring out the dark side of campaigners, with rules being bent and mailing lists being abused left, right and centre. I just wish we could all get along like we did in middle school.

15:47 If you’ve got a prediction for how the election will go, email [email protected]

15:45  Countdown winner Oliver Garner is placing his bets on how the referendum will go, he’s guessing 53.9% voting to leave and a 5900 turnout.

15:40 It’s been an exciting campaigning period with a lot of last minute revelations, including the discovery that thousands of pounds was absent from the official guidance provided by CUSU ahead of the NUS referendum.

15:28 It’s been a long campaign period. For all five of you who haven’t been keeping up with all the developments, here’s a breakdown of what you’ve missed.

Following accusations of anti-semitism being levelled at newly-elected NUS president Malia Bouattia, a motion was brought to CUSU Council by Jack May and Adam Crafton proposing that Cambridge have a referendum on NUS affiliation. You can find all the details of what went down here.

Since then we’ve had students from both sides of the debate coming forward to tell us what they think of the NUS and whether or not we should stay affiliated.

Here’s our Tab round up:

Former Jewish Society President Gabriel Gendler argues here that the NUS cannot be reformed from within.

Martha Krish, Ruby Kwong and CUSU Access Officer Helena Blair argue that the NUS can only be changed from within here.

Jack May, Tab columnist and one of the leaders of the Yes Campaign lays out his thoughts on why we should leave here.

Olly Hudson, former NUS delegate, tells us that we cannot endorse the NUS so long as they dismiss anti-semitism here.

Anastasia Nerisia Picton Vraka, argues that the NUS is not the root of all evil and we should stay affiliated here.

Jon Cooper argues that the voices of Jewish students need to be prioritised in the NUS debate here.

NUS Vice-President Richard Brooks talks about the consequences of disaffiliation here.

Adam Crafton, one of the leaders of the Yes Campaign, asks how the NUS can reform from within to combat anti-semitism considering their track record here.

CUSU President Priscilla Mensah argues here that change within the NUS might be slow but we must stay affiliated in order to push for change here.

We apologise unequivocally for the amount of NUS referendum spam we’ve been spewing out over the last week, but hey, maybe that’s why the referendum has had a record-breaking turnout.