Chloe Staunton has been elected as the next welfare & equality officer of Trinity College Dublin Students’ Union (TCDSU) on the first count, securing 66.6% of the vote.
Staunton’s opponent Cúnla Morris received 28.9% of first preference votes, while 4.5% voted to reopen nominations. There were 1500 valid ballots cast in the welfare & equality race.
Speaking to Trinity News following her win, Staunton said that the win “means everything”. “It just means that people believed in my ideas, they believed in me.” She expressed her excitment to support students next year.
Staunton, the current Disabilities Officer for TCDSU, ran a strong campaign focusing on core themes of accessibility, inclusion, and transparency. She pledged to lobby for fee reductions, advocate for international students, and improve service visibility to inform students of the resources available to them.
The final year business and sociology student also hopes to facilitate consent and unconscious bias training for students and staff as well as improving the report structures and formal policies which are in place to help victims of sexual harassment and assault.
Mental health supports and accommodation were also key points of Staunton’s manifesto. Touting a broad range of welfare experience, Staunton emphasised the casework element of the role throughout her campaign, and pitched herself as a capable and approachable person to fulfil it.
She will take over the role from Sierra Mueller-Owens, whom Staunton has commended during her campaign, saying that she will continue to build on the work done by the incumbent officer. The handover will take place during the summer.
Polling conducted by Trinity News last week predicted a comfortable win for Staunton, which the final count reflects.
Additional reporting Eva O’Beirne