Tatiana Lutgens

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SEX – Taboo or natural? Being able to talk freely about sex and sexual health is key to a young student’s wellbeing, especially for those with the mindset of having the full ‘uni experience’. My aim is to encourage an open conversation and bring awareness that there is no shame in having sex, not having sex and having sex safely.

I want to bring sex education to the doorstep of campus by making free condoms and STI-testing more accessible and focusing on an educational campaign, including guest speakers and interactive workshops.

Green Campus– BU does a great job in being sustainable, but more can be done. More glass and aluminium alternatives in the student shop and other outlets available at all times.

I also aim to create more green spaces by encouraging living art stations and proposing botanical walls around Talbot and Lansdowne campuses.

Mental Health and Accessibility- We all know that looking after our mental health is vital, but what tools do we actually have at our disposal to do this? My aim is to introduce weekly coffee mornings and craft sessions as a safe space to those who struggle with loneliness or just need someone to talk to.

Accessibility has been an ongoing battle at BU, from the constantly breaking disabled doors to the inaccessible layout of rooms; this needs to be evaluated and changed urgently.

Liberation Campaigns- As someone who’s worked with the campaigns for the past 2 years, I have gained enough experience to understand how they work and the importance they play in supporting marginalised communities on campus. My goal is to promote these campaigns through social media and campus presence and to encourage intersectionality by having monthly meetings and intersectional events.

Vote Tatti, your Crazy Plant Person for #1 VP Welfare and Community

Tatiana claims in her manifesto that she is a “crazy plant person”, and carried this on in her interview by saying “I’m a queer crazy plant person with sexual and mental health on my mind. I’ve personally worked with the Green Society and have been talking to them about how to make the campus more sustainable.” She further adds that she has visited the union’s allotments a few times too and feels as if she is clued in to how the university can make small changes to make it more sustainable. In her manifesto, Tatti also mentions the encouragement of living art stations and the building of a botanical wall around both Talbot and Lansdowne campuses.

Aside from this, Tatiana was able to demonstrate how her previous experience at University can aid her in the role of VP Welfare and Community. This previous experience includes two years of being a part of liberation campaigns, including being an LGBT+ officer.

She argued in her interview that people do not have enough awareness of different liberation campaigns that exist within SUBU: “There are people who are from marginalised groups who would identify with the liberation campaigns who just don’t know that they exist, and are not aware of where or who they can go to”. It would be Tatiana’s aim to make these campaigns better advertised and make awareness of events easily accessible.

In addition, we questioned Tatiana on her idea of holding weekly coffee mornings and craft sessions in order to provide safe spaces. Her response to this was as follows:

“The idea of advertising free tea and coffee, like, who wouldn’t want free tea and coffee? It allows the opportunity to bring people together and battle loneliness.  Also, the arts and crafts sessions that are hosted at ArtsBU are very well attended, I’ve been to quite a few of them myself, but the lady that hosts them is only here during specific times of the semester. I would love to make them more of a weekly thing. As a fellow student, I know how hard it is being a student: it’s depressing, you’re always stressed. These sessions would allow you to take a moment for yourself and create something new and something different.”

Whilst this is a solid idea, it would have been great to hear a bit more from Tatiana about how she would have ensured attendance to this event.

Sex is also a huge talking point in Tatiana’s manifesto, with her adding in her interview that she hears the question “is this normal?” from her friends very frequently. She goes on to discuss how sexual health is something not widely talked about, and that education in these areas should exist “without any shame or stigma” being attached to it.

Lastly, it is clear that Tatiana has a very strong passion for accessibility around campus. She made it clear that doors that are touch free should be available on all buildings around campus, due to the difficulties disabled people face without this:

“most of the disabled people at university use the Sports BU doors instead of the actual disabled doors, as I have only ever known that door to break once, and it is touch-free. I personally think that there should be more doors like the Sports BU door all around both campuses.”

She goes on to say that she would also like to change room layouts. She claims that the create lecture theatre and the seminar rooms in Fusion are not wheelchair accessible, something that she would like to be able to actively change.