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Students asked to crash National Student Survey in support of reproductive issues and survivors of sexual violence

By Kimberley Mannion

SWAG and GSC have produced a list of demands for students to utilise the survey to make to the University.

University of Glasgow students are being urged to crash the annual National Student Survey (NSS) by two societies: Successful Women at Glasgow (SWAG) and Glasgow Students for Choice (GSC). The groups are concerned with the University’s attitude towards staff and student wellbeing in relation to sexual violence and reproductive issues.

The NSS is run by Ipsos Mori, and helps formulate university league tables such as The Times University and College list, in which the University of Glasgow currently stands at 10th in the UK. The survey closes on 30 April. 

The campaign run by SWAG and GSC asks students to consider commenting on a range of issues in the survey, principally that of Good Cause claims in relation to miscarriage, abortion, emergency contraceptives and sexual assault. It suggests students ask the University, through the NSS, to eliminate the evidence requirement for Good Cause claims made on these grounds, and be more transparent, publicly listing all the circumstances which would constitute Good Cause, including this list. 

“The campaign suggests students ask the University, through the NSS, to eliminate the evidence requirement for Good Cause claims made on grounds [in relation to] miscarriage, abortion, emergency contraceptives and sexual assault.”

Other concerns SWAG and GSC wish to see highlighted to the University through the NSS include making advice on topics typically branded “women’s issues” available to trans men and non-binary students. They also ask the University to provide prioritised counselling referals to students who have experienced miscarriage, abortion and sexual assault. 

Sexual violence is an area the campaign wants students to focus on in the survey, asking the Senate to improve their communication with survivors on ongoing cases and offering them better support, including more comprehensive reporting tools and practices. 

Vice President of SWAG, Kate Fryer, told The Glasgow Guardian: “It is important for students to take the opportunity with such audits as the NSS to highlight and criticise the mismanagement of the Uni and any concerns that you hold. Such surveys that affect the reputation (and thus profitability of the uni!) are what management really seem to be concerned with.”


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