Vice President’s Report – Week 7, Sem 1, 2019

Dane Luo

Vice President Consultation

The Vice President consultation drop-in times are every Thursday 11am to 1pm in the SRC offices. Come and have a chat! For satellite campuses, email us at vice.president@src.usyd.edu.au.

Health Days for Mallet Street and Cumberland

Next Tuesday, we are holding our inaugural Health Day at Mallet Street from 11am to 2pm. In week 8, we will be holding a second Health Day at Cumberland on Tuesday 30 April from 11am to 2pm. If you’re in our satellite campuses, come and learn from SRC and SUPRA caseworkers at the SRC, University student support services, NGOs and local organisations.

Welfare Week for Camperdown/Darlington

Welfare Week will be happening on week 3 of semester 2. It will engage students with events on Eastern Avenue, with students from all campuses welcome to attend. The purpose of this would be to showcase all the services provided by the University, SRC, USU and local community organisations whether it be financial, personal health, student housing etc as well as services not provided for by the University.

Special consideration and simple extensions

Requesting a simple extension is an informal process between you and your UOS coordinator. A UOS Coordinator can grant a 2 working day extension for a non-examination task. You should email them with as much notice as possible and explain
your circumstances. For longer illnesses (including the exacerbation of a disability) or misadventure that isshort term and outside of your control, you can request for special consideration within 3 working days of an assessment on the University’s online portal. You will need documentation to support your claim.

For example, if you are sick you will need a Professional Practitioner’s Certificate (PPC)completed by your treating doctor or counsellor. Download a PPC from the special consideration website. Your PPC needs be on or before the day of your assessment. If you are not able to see a doctor on or before the day, you can call a home doctor service to come to you. If you have a long term illness (4+ weeks) you should seek accommodations from the Disability Services Unit.

We are aware that there are providers of fake medical certificates available through social media (eg Facebook, WeChat). If you have not gone to a doctor’s surgery and spoken to a doctor in-person, your certificate is likely to be fake. If you are caught using one of these, you can face misconduct proceedings that may lead to suspension.

If you need any help, seek advice from a SRC caseworker. They are welcoming, free and can provide confidential advice.

SRC President’s Report – Week 7, Sem 1, 2019

Jacky He

Keep Kinley in Australia

Receiving permanent residency in Australia is an extremely strenuous process that involves submitting many documents and completing various language tests to finally receive an opportunity to just line up for a permanent residency status.

Imagine being the person who finally waits for the day when they are informed they may have a chance to stay in Australia, but is then informed that they will be unable to receive permanent residency due to a hearing disability and deported from Australia. To put forward disability as a reason to not grant someone their permanency residency is an extremely discriminative behaviour that we should oppose.

Kinley Wangchuck was a victim of such discrimination. I would like to think Australia is a fair country where everyone can be treated equally, and therefore we need to protect the weak by raising a voice.
SRC will be joining NUS Disabiility Officer in their initiative on Thursday 11th of April at 12pm outside the Department of Immigration office in Sydney to keep Kinley in Australia, as disability should beyond all doubt NOT be a cause for deportation. I encourage everyone to support the initiative and take a stance to help Kinley and his family.

SRC stands with Christchurch

Almost three weeks have passed ever since the Christchurch massacre happened on the 15th of March 2019, but the trauma and the pain from the tragedy have never faded away. As the SRC, we condemn the fascist behaviours and we send our most sincere condolence to the victims of the tragedy and their families, and we extend this condolence to the wider Muslim community who has played an extremely important role in Australia’s multiculturalism. This week, I will compose a letter to both the Al Noor Mosque and Linwood Islamic Centre expressing the condolences and solidarity of the SRC on behalf of the student body at Sydney University. We strongly oppose islamophobia and stand against any forms of racism, bigotry and oppression.

Ask Abe: Centrelink and Income

Dear Abe,

How much can I work while I’m on Youth Allowance?

Working


Dear Working,

Youth Allowance and Austudy recipients have a Student Income Bank (SIB), which allows you to work while receiving a Centrelink payment. Each fortnight you are allowed to earn $437 without any reduction to your payment. If you earn less than $437 in that fortnight, the remainder is carried over to the next fortnight. This can accumulate to a maximum of $10,900 a year. If you earn more than your SIB in a fortnight, your Centrelink payment is reduced by
50 cents per dollar for every dollar between $437 and $524, then 60 cents per dollar for every dollar afterwards.

These amounts are current as at March 2018, and will change a couple of times a year.

Abe.

More information:
http://srcusyd.net.au/src-help/centrelink/your-income/

SRC Help: Week 7 – Keep your receipts and records

Wouldn’t it be great if we could trust that everyone did the right thing by us. Sadly we can’t. That’s where receipts and contracts come in.

When you pay a deposit, or rent, or any other bill, get a receipt. A printed receipt. On paper. Perferably in English. Take a photo of it, and email it to yourself, just in case you need it in the future. Having a record of the electronic bank transfer will not necessarily substitute for a receipt. Where possible it is best to have both.

A receipt is the only way that you can prove that you have actually paid. This may become useful in the future if someone, like your landlord, or housemates were to insist that you did not pay that money, or that you paid less.

If you live in a home where the landlord or (their agent) does not live, you are considered a tenant and should have a lease. If you live with your landlord (or their agent) you are a boarder or lodger, and should have a contract. This should show what the address is, how much you are meant to pay, when you are meant to move in, when you are meant to move out, and sometimes what happens if you move out earlier. It is important to keep a copy of your lease or contract, so that you can prove if there is a breach of the lease or contract. Again, you could scan it and email yourself a copy. This in turn may help you to claim back any money you are owed.

The SRC has had many cases where students have paid bond for their home, then moved out, and had their landlord refuse to refund the bond, saying that they didn’t pay any. Similarly we have seen landlords claim that students were behind in rent. We have even seen landlords agree that a student could move out of the home early and charged them extra money for this. In all of these cases written records would have helped the student at the tribunal.

The SRC has caseworkers able to help with tenancy and accommodation issues like this. Make an appointment by calling 9660 5222.

SRC Women’s Officer’s Report – Week 5, Sem 1, 2019

Gabi Stricker-Phelps and Crystal Xu

FREE Sanitary Items

We have purchased our first batch of sanitary items! We intend to refill stock each month. If you need sanitary items, please do not hesitate to come and get what you need from the SRC office under the Wentworth Building free of charge.

Women’s Health Week and Mental Health

We are proposing a Women’s Health Week from the 6-9th of September 2019. This would involve health focused talks, information sessions and workshops. The focus topics include:

  • Contraception and Sex
  • Self-defence classes
  • Zumba or aerobics
  • Meditation and mindfulness
  • Understanding abortion and accessing pregnancy services
  • Nutrition
  • Reliable and affordable health care services for students

If you have an idea or topic you would like to raise during this week (or before) please visit or contact us.
We are liaising with the Health Education Officer, Miriam Deshayes. Miriam also wants the University Health Service to collaborate with SUPRA and the SRC for University Mental Health Day on the 7th of May.

Meetings

We had a follow up meeting with Sophia Zeritis and the senior manager of diversity, leadership and inclusion department, Sarah Abbott, to discuss potential collaboration between the SRC and the university on promoting career development and female leadership panels. We submitted a student survey result about university career services and pointed out several problem areas that the career centre could focus on to improve student experience and the provision of services. We also intend to run a panel discussion forum in Semester 2 with female alumni to foster mentoring relationships.

Female Journalism: ENID

We are working on promoting and setting up the ENID platform, an online hub of USYD women’s opinions, work, thoughts and issues. If you have an interest in writing, illustrating, photography, playing a musical instrument, performing, giving advice or have anything else you want to share contact us as per details below. All students are welcome and encouraged to get involved.

Disabilities Officer – Week 5, Sem 1, 2019

Hayden Moon and Wilson Huang

Hello and a warm welcome from the Disabilities officers.

Support the mental health of students

During Welcome Week, we communicated with the NUS Disabilities Officer William Edwards about his No Mind Left Behind campaign. A disproportionate number of students experience psychological distress, and we are dismayed by campus counselling services. The University of Sydney gives students up to 6 counselling sessions per year. For many students needing long term support, this is not enough. We encourage everyone to sign a petition calling for reform in campus counselling services at www.megaphone.org.au/p/nmlb.

Accessibility at Redfern station

In October 2018, the USyd Disabilities Collective along with People with Disabilities Australia (PWDA) held a rally outside Redfern calling for more accessible public transport. We are pleased to announce that according to news from The Sydney Morning Herald, new lifts will be built increasing accessibility to Redfern Station. We continue to advocate for accessibility in public transport for all disabled people.

Disabilities space on campus

We would like a space on campus for students and staff with disability. Students with disability can be incredibly isolated especially when they don’t know others like them. We believe that having a disabilities space would be beneficial for the social inclusion, mental health and wellbeing of disabled students on campus. We have contacted the USU about finding a space and plan to follow up on it.

Intersectionality

During the beginning of the year, two of our collective members, Robin Eames (Disabilities officer 2018) and Hayden Moon (Disabilities officer 2019), presented at The Better Together Conference held by The Equality Project.

As members of SQuAD (Sydney Queer and Disability community group), Hayden and Robin did a great job of discussing the difficulties that come with being disabled and queer in 2019 and how far we still need to go in terms of equality. The Panel was called “Queer & Disabled: Intersections, inclusion, solidarity, community.”

Joining the Disabilities collective

As always we welcome new members into our collective who have disabilities including mental, chronic, or terminal illnesses; people who are neurodivergent; and people who are D/deaf or hard of hearing, even if they don’t identify as disabled or as having a disability. Sign up at https://www.facebook.com/groups/USydDisabilities2018/.

SRC President’s Report – Week 6, Sem 1, 2019

President
Jacky He

SRC Pizza and Beer Party Overview

The SRC hosted a very successful pizza and beer party open to all undergraduate students on Thursday 28th of March. The event attracted the attendance of around 100 students across all faculties and disciplines, including both international and domestic. It was a fantastic opportunity for undergraduate students, especially for first year students, to expand their network at the University. It was also very lovely to see our student office bearers actively engaging with other undergraduate students, getting to know their needs and feedbacks about the SRC. The SRC, in collaboration with Courtyard, was able to provide each one of our 100 students with a free beer. We also had a face-painting workshop set up for the students! Hereby I would like to thank the entire senior executive team, especially Caitlyn who has been responsible for organising the marketing and organising helpers for the event. I would also like to thank our international student officers Visspa, Ken, Janet and Jahanzaib for their works in preparing and setting up the event. I would also like to thank our caseworker Mel for providing safety advices that have allowed the event to proceed without any issues.

Enhancing Student’s University Experience

The university’s campus experience steering group is recently looking for students to participate in their study about student experience on campus. If you are an undergraduate student who is interested in being a part of the process, please visit our SRC Facebook page and scroll to the relevant section to register your details. Or you may also visit http://tiny.cc/campusx to register your interest.