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Current location: Coventry

Your Students' Union (CUSU), in accordance with the 1994 Education Act, aims to ensure that our elections are conducted in a free and fair manner. The following rules and guiding principles have been established to keep these elections free, fair and friendly.

In determining these rules and principles the following values are applied:

  1. Elections are the mechanism by which our members (electorate) can choose their student leaders (representatives). Wherever possible is should be the electorate who should decide and be the decision makers.
  2. Our rules are to ensure everyone has a fair and equitable chance of winning and not an equal chance of winning. Therefore, we will not make rules regarding actions campaigners take that disadvantage themselves.
  3. Sanctions to rule breaches aim to proportionally redress the balance of an election where a breach occurs. 
  4. Opportunity of access is important and therefore rules are established to ensure equal opportunity of access to our elections.

Should you have any questions regarding these rules and guiding principles please email the elections team.

Click here to access our Rules and Principles Guide

Election Rules

Responding to COVID-19: Election Changes

All physical campaigning activity is strictly prohibited for the 2021 election period. Candidates and their supporters are only permitted to conduct digital campaigning activity.

This rule has been put in place in response to the ongoing COVID-19 Pandemic and is for the safety of campaigners, Students and members of the public.

Rule 1

Candidates must not form slates with other candidates or engage in slate activity such as combining resources.

Please note: that candidates standing as a role share will be classed as a single candidate and therefore not a slate.

Rule 2

Candidates must take reasonable steps to ensure that the actions of their supporters comply with the election rules and guiding principles.

Please note: that should a complaint arise they must be able to demonstrate such steps were taken.

Rule 3

Campaigners (Candidates and their supporters) must adhere to all Coventry University Students' Union policies, Coventry University policies and 'laws of the land'.

Please note: that breaching of these may result in disciplinary action outside the scope of these elections.

Rule 4

Campaigners (Candidates and their supporters) must not undertake activity that is deemed negative campaigning such as smear campaigns or that focus on another candidates charecter.

Please note: campaigners can engage in healthly debate over election topics such as policies or pledges.

Rule 5

Campaigners (Candidates and their supporters) must allow the electorate (voters) to cast their ballots secretly, freely and fairly.

Please note: this means you must not infleunce their decision whilst they are in the process of casting their ballot. It also means not providing voters with a reward (financial or other) for voting for a specific candidate. To avoid confusion any electronic device, such as a mobile, should be considered a ballot station.

Rule 6

Campaigners (Candidates and their supporters) must only alter, move or remove their own campaign materials whilst campaigning and voting is open.

Rule 7

Campaigners (Candidates and their supporters) must not undertake campaigning activity which others could not reasonably do.

Rule 8

Campaigners (Candidates and their supporters) must not seek or recieve any external endorsements or support unless such support has been allowed as part of reasonable adjustments.

Please note: candidates can recieve endorsements from internal groups such as Sports Clubs and Societies as long as it follows group endorsement guidance. Should a complaint arise they must demonstrate this guidance was followed.

Rule 9

Campaigners (Candidates and their supporters) must not exceed their assigned campaign budget (if applicable).

Please note: items that are freely and readily available to all campaigners can be used without itemisation. Should a complaint arise they must demonstrate that such materials were freely and readily available.

Rule 10

Campaigners (Candidates and their supporters) may only use mailing lists where lawful to do so.

Please note: that in most cases this will require the consent of the members on the list to use their details. This means that you will not be able to use pre-existing lists.

Learn more about our complaints process for rule breaches.

Guiding Principles

Principle 1

Campaigners (Candidates and their supporters) should treat other campaigners, students and members of the public with dignity and respect.

Principle 2

Campaigners (Candidates and their supporters) should focus on their own campaign plan and follow it through. For their wellbeing they should not concern themselves with others campaigns.

Principle 3

Even though candidates cannot support each other to campaign this does not mean you cannot support each other’s wellbeing. A friendly and open culture is important and a nice word can go a long way to support someone’s mental health.

Please note: if you feel another candidate is struggling then please refer them to a member of the elections team so we can offer support.

Principle 4

Campaigners (Candidates and their supporters) should not do anything to gain an unfair advantage.

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