Polling day: Adelaide Medical and Health Sciences campus
words by Jenny Nguyen
The top conversation starters were “do you wanna save the UniBar?” and “what are you wearing to MedBall this weekend?”
In the West End of town, the newest polling station for the student union elections opened up on North Terrace this morning.
Candidates and campaigners from Activate, Swipe Right and Unite were on site to hand out How To Vote cards to students at the new Adelaide Health & Medical Sciences building.
Compared to North Terrace, voter turn out is traditionally lower at other campuses. A total of 70 ballots were counted at the AHMS site. With only one single polling booth available, this became problematic during the hourly class changeovers where foot traffic increased significantly. On several occasions, students were queueing for more than 20 minutes in order to vote.
On Dit asked prospective SRC candidates, Isabella Watts (Activate, General Councillor) and William Miller (Swipe Right, SRC President) about their policy platforms.
Watts plans work with the SRC to lobby for student study spaces in the AHMS and extend the AUU’s counselling service off-campus to support medical students on placement.
On the other hand, Miller plans to build a UniBar at AHMS, host more social events and increase the food options on the ground floor (there is ONE coffee shop here).
Activate and Swipe Right were the dominant factions at this campus, campaigning from start til close. Unite was also a beckoning force in the morning before one of their candidates was suspended from campaigning. After hearing about the campus buzz, Left Action and Progress also sent down campaigners but they were quickly outnumbered and returned to the main site.
There other exciting thing that happened was a fire evacuation on the 5th floor.
On North Terrace, Bemmer, Denney and Burnet publicly issued an apology for their “aggressive campaigning” towards a candidate from the Fraser, Duddy, Nidumolu and Petersen ticket. In a statement provided to On Dit, Bemmer, Denney and Burnet, said:
We posted an apology this morning to Fiona’s On Dit team after one of our team members had a heated encounter with Fiona yesterday. The fact of the matter is defamatory allegations were made against our ticket which we take incredibly seriously. We will not acquiesce to allegations that were made against us, especially when they are baseless and completely false.
The Fraser, Duddy, Nidumolu and Petersen ticket responded with the following comment:
‘There was a rumour of uncertain origin that a member of our team was denigrating their team. This is categorically false; we have intentionally avoided commenting on the other teams in our campaigning because we want to focus on what we can bring to the role. Their team was threatening us with legal action. The candidate targeted by this rumour was very upset and advised the RO.
Shortly afterwards, a candidate on the [from Bemmer, Denney and Burnet] ticket approached our candidate and made several accusations. When our candidate denied the rumour and attempted to walk away, the candidate shouted several things including that our candidate is a liar and a defamer.
Our candidate shifted campaigning locations to get away, but found that the shouting individual also changed locations shortly afterwards. Our candidate was deeply distressed and ceased campaigning for the day. Shortly after our candidate left that location, the other team’s candidate changed locations once more.
We are pleased that the other team recognises their conduct was unacceptable and we accept their apology.
And that was day 3 all wrapped up.
P.S: you can pick up a copy of On Dit on the 3rd floor of the AHMS building.