President of Aberystwyth University’s Guild of Students resigned from his post on the NUS Wales National Executive Committee Tuesday morning at 10:20am.
Ben Meakin’s resignation was at the request of NUS Wales President Luke Young after photographs circulating online show Meakin participating in an event where a woman mimed fake fellatio on him.
The event – which was not held or endorsed by the Guild – took place after the Superteams day at a local pub located outside the university campus.
NUS Wales President Luke Young said:
“His actions have shown a serious lack of sound judgment. This is unacceptable for a member of the NUS Wales Executive and is why I asked him to resign.”
Meakin issued this apology:
“I sincerely regret my participation in the social event held outside the Guild after our Superteams day.
“I compromised my role as Guild president. This morning, I resigned as a member of the NUS Wales National Executive Committee (WNEC). My actions go against the fantastic work of the women's liberation movement, which I fully support.
"Personally, I am a strong advocate for the women's movement. This is clear through my work banning the event Carnage coming to the Guild this year. I have learned from this experience and plan to carry on my work here at Aberystwyth University.”
NUS Wales Women’s Officer Stephanie Lloyd responded:
“The NUS Wales women’s campaign has always taken the stance that sexism on campus should never be tolerated. We must do everything we can to fight against it. Whilst Ben has joined our movement in the past, his recent actions are unacceptable.
“I have personally made violence against women my priority this year, working with our unions to implement a zero tolerance policy to sexual harassment. Women have the right to study and go about their daily lives without the fear, reality and the dismissal of sexual harassment.”
The NUS Wales National Executive Committee brings together elected representatives from the organisation's different groups to ensure the organisation is fulfilling the policy mandates set at the NUS Wales Conference.
NUS UK is a confederation of democratic students' unions made up of around 700 self governing members. Individual Students' Unions have their own democratic processes and are wholly responsible for their own governance.
Whilst NUS leaders are elected by delegates from students' unions NUS has no authority over the internal affairs of its members. As such, elected officers at students' unions are wholly accountable to students at their institution.