There is a sickness living within the management of Cardiff Student Union, and it isn’t Covid 19.
Last year the officers and executive failed to protect either us as models or their society organisers when one such organiser wanted to promote having a female model in a bar environment with up to 60 students from the general student population having a taster session of life drawing while being encouraged to drink cheap alcohol.
This I felt was inappropriate and because I refused to supply a model under those conditions the organiser threw one and our relationship was over.
I went to the officers. Tumbleweed. I then went o the executive and there was a response but it was one that fully supported their organiser and encouraged their autonomy of decision making. No duty of care was shown to the organiser and if there had been an issue I wonder who would have taken the fall? That organiser trashed our eight year relationship and I thought I would hear no more. Ever.
Then recently I was approached to organise a model or models for a taster session or sessions for a couple of weeks hence.
This years Arts Society organiser is amazing, being diligent, planning in advance, taking on board my advice and in all ways ensuring good communication. We planned together with the Arts Society Management Team to provide multiple life drawing events throughout the course of one day in a cafe environment in small groups of six. These sessions were designed to be in line with Welsh Government advice.
I wrote the contract and then it was signed BUT then the SU were asked to part pay for the taster session, usual practice for a society. And they said NO!
I said ‘The SU are being difficult there. This is for education PLUS it’s in a cafe PLUS it’s social distanced. The SU it seems do not understand the rules. In Uni you will have lectures with multiple people from different households taking place.’
The SU said ‘NO’.
So it would appear that this years intake of students cannot even attend a carefully and in compliance event.
What galls me here is the total and unheard of support last year for putting a model into a very dodgy and risky situation and pissing all over an eight year partnership but when a sensible student works hard to enable a safe event this year they are knocked back rather than empowered.
All very sad for us, for students and truly not good for the future of student life and our society in general.
Shame on the SU!