We asked YUSU Presidential Candidates about their opinions on key issues in free expression and speech at the University. Ananna Zaman (http://elections.yusu.org/manifesto/11310) replied:
Question 1: Under what circumstances should external speakers, or members of panels, be denied access to campus or the right to speak?
If there is a threat to student welfare, whether that be mental or physical.
Question 2: Under what circumstances should the contents, or presentation, of courses be changed in the interests of student welfare?
If the content of the course is triggering to individuals who might suffer from anxiety or PTSD to the point where they are unable to focus and engage with their studies there should be warnings. It’s courteous of academia to take into account the individual needs of students who pay 27 grand odd to be educated here.
Question 3: What facilities should be made available at the University to students who feel threatened by some views, opinions or debates to remove themselves from environments in which those are present?
There should be physical spaces for liberation networks and anyone who feels threatened or deeply upset by these views and it should be personalised and turned into a community space where they can go without fear of harassment and confidence they will be treated with respect.
Question 4: When is it appropriate to withdraw a media article, or prevent it from being published, in the interests of student welfare?
It should only happen if there is a legal basis but I am aware though that sometimes things are pulled without a legal basis.