Last Wednesday, AUSA announced that Queer Rights Officer Sophie Canning would be stepping down this week after almost two years in the role.
“Sophie has told us that as this is her last Semester at the University of Auckland, she wants to put herself and her studies first,” says Acting President George Barton.
Sophie first joined the AUSA executive in 2018, and was re-elected to the role again following the AUSA election in August. “During her time as Queer Rights Officer, Sophie has been an exceptionally hard working and devoted advocate for our LGBTQITakatapui+ students, and an incredible member of our 2018 and 2019 Executives,” says George.
“I would like to especially acknowledge Sophie’s incredible mahi in changing the University’s official rainbow acronym, moving AUSA’s Queerspace to a bigger and more accommodating venue and being a massive part of AUSA’s response to discrimination at this University.”
“On behalf of AUSA – thank you Sophie for all you’ve done in your role.”
“I’m incredibly thankful to AUSA for affording me the opportunity to advocate for, and represent the Queer community at UoA over the past year and a half,” Sophie tells Craccum. “Resigning from the role was a difficult decision to make, and it certainly wasn’t made lightly. However, I’m conscious that for my own benefit, that it’s time to pass on the role to someone who cares for the Queer community just as much as I do, and will continue to seek absolute equity and equality on behalf of the LGBTQITakatapui+ students on campus.”
“My time as the Queer Rights Officer has been nothing short of amazing, and it saddens me that I am unable to continue on. But I know I leave AUSA as a better person for having filled the QRO role, and for that I am grateful.”
It is expected that a by-election will be held in the coming days to find a new candidate to fill Sophie’s role. As of yet, no announcement has been made by AUSA.
Craccum wishes Sophie the best of luck as she leaves AUSA and focuses on concluding her studies.