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This Union belongs to its students. What it believes - and what it does - comes down to you.

If you want to shape the Union’s views on any issue, the best way is to submit a motion. Your proposal will be debated at a democratic meeting, like Union Council, or decided by a referendum.

What is a motion?

A campaign might involve pushing to influence senior university management, or force a wider change nationally or internationally. A motion - on the other hand - is a move to set the Union’s position on a certain issue.

By accepting a motion, the Union might be stating where it stands on an issue, or committing itself to campaigning for change. This might result in officers or representatives being assigned to a particular task. 

These policies last for two years, and are reviewed by Union Council during this period.

How do I submit a motion?

The policies of Students’ Union UCL can be set by the Union CouncilGeneral Assembly and Referenda. If you want to change policy, contact su-democracy@ucl.ac.uk to get started.

If your motion involves a controversial issue, requires finances to be committed, or involves a Union-wide boycott, we recommend you speak to the Representation and Campaigns team before submitting. They can be reached on su-democracy@ucl.ac.uk and are based on the Floor 4 of the Union Building at 25 Gordon Street.

You should submit motions online by 5pm on deadline day. The deadlines are below:

Motions for Union Council and General Assemblies

4 working days in advance of the meeting*

Amendments to Governing Documents

10 working day in advance of the meeting

Amendments to Motions

1 working day in advance of the meeting

* for a Union Council meeting taking place on a Tuesday, the deadline would usually be 5pm on the preceding Wednesday.

The deadline dates for specific meetings can be found on each meeting page for Union Council and General Assembly 

Motions will be published on the Union website:

Motions

3 working days in advance of the meeting

Amendments to Governing Documents

9 working days in advance of the meeting

Amendments to Motions

On the day of the meeting

If an emergency issue occurs after the deadline, contact the Union Chair ( ) at least three hours before the meeting is due to start.

How do I write a motion?

There is no compulsory style for motions. However, we recommend the format below to make motions clearer and reduce confusion.

Each motion should have a title, which concisely summarises the issue. You should break down what you want to say into clear paragraphs, and outline what you want the Union to do.

When laying out your position, these phrases may be helpful:

Union Council/General Assembly notes… (FACTS)

This must be factual information that can be independently seen to be true.

Union Council/General Assembly believes… (OPINIONS)

These are things that you consider to be true, but which other people may disagree with. You should be open-minded and accept that others may not agree with what you believe, even if you consider it to be “fact”.

Union Council/General Assembly resolves… (ACTIONS)

This section tells us what action to take as an organisation.

What next?

As the proposer of the motion, you will be expected to give a speech at the meeting when it is discussed. Your motion will pass if it has a simple majority of over 50%. However, amendments to governing documents and no confidence motions require 75%.

Passed motions will become policy, as long as it is lawful to do so under Charity Law, the Equality Act and other legal obligations. These policies are displayed on the Union website, and will influence union policy.