ABERYSTWYTH University Students’ Union released a statement on Tuesday evening outlining the rationale behind their decision to not show the boxing match between Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao last Saturday.
This decision was made after the Officer team received a request from Women’s Officer Claire Herbert. In her letter to the Union, Herbert stated that:
“I ask for this removal of showing as one of the fighters, Floyd Mayweather, has a history of domestic violence towards women spanning over fourteen years that includes at least five separate physical assaults on five different women that resulted in arrest or caution.
As Women’s officer I feel that should his match be screened, it would be seen as simply a way for the Union to make money and, as a result, endorsing athletes who partake in domestic violence as well as domestic violence as a whole.”
In their statement, the Officer team said that:
“AberSU is a member led organization and our events are run for the enjoyment of the student body and as such any student has the right to complain about upcoming events being organised by the Union. Where a complaint is received your elected officers will consider whether or not there is breach of policy or cause for reputational damage. It was decided unanimously in this case that there was sufficient evidence to warrant cancellation. Each case will be treated separately.”
In the statement, Students’ Union President Jacob Ellis stated that:
“The case was presented to us by one of our elected part time Officers, who represents and campaigns for our membership. As an officer team, we are unified in our decision. According to the NHS website ‘One woman in four (and one man in six) in the UK will be a victim of domestic violence during their lifetime, according to research estimates’ and the Union proudly campaigns to end sexual harassment and assault against men and women.
The Students’ Union operates under policies chosen by the membership and the decision was taken in line with those values. Where there is not policy on a matter the officer team will make a decision based on current policies, experiences and training. There is sometimes not enough time to consult the wider student body as was the case here.Our core policies are as follows; Bilingualism, Safe Space, Zero Tolerance towards Sexual Harassment & Abuse, and Green. The case showed a potential breach to two of these policies. We apologise for any inconvenience caused due to the cancellation, but wish to state that we stand by the decision made.If anyone wishes to discuss or has any concerns regarding any matters, you are welcome to pop in to the Students’ Union for a chat, attend any of our democratic meetings such as our AGM, Council meetings and zones or drop the Officer team an e-mail. “