Bangor students have launched a petition in attempt to save the Nightline support service which was closed at the end of June following a recommendation from a former Saab officer within the Student Union.
In a recently released statement, Undeb said: “In June 2017 the Undeb Bangor Trustee Board took the difficult decision to permanently close Bangor Nightline following reports of concerning behaviour by it’s committee and the way that it was being run.”
Bangor Nightline has been in place for over forty years as a form of anonymous support for students at the University. Operating via volunteers, the service had the honour of being the first Nightline in the UK to be accredited by the Nightline Associations ‘Good Practice Guidelines’ in 2011
Joe Crofton, Deputy coordinator of Nightline said: “We have always worked with the SU and changed our service delivery to be able to carry on operating within SU guidelines. This required what you might call ‘watering down the service’ but the SU and Nightline have always been able to overcome issues and continue to work together.”
In its appeal report, Nightline suggested that Bangor University’s in-house counselling service was unable to cope with demand with students having to wait anywhere between six weeks to a full semester for an appointment. However the new Saab officer for Societies and Volunteering, James Williams said: “There’s not an issue with the capacity of counselling at all. We talked about this with the head of student experience to ensure this wasn’t the case.”
Following the closure of Nightline, all calls to the service have been redirected to the Samaritans with Undeb keen to ensure that those students who need to talk have someone who is ready and willing to listen. Undeb said: “We care about our student body, and we strongly believe that support, like this, from trained professionals is the most appropriate and is in the best interests of our students.
In regards to the proposed replacement service, Undeb hopes to begin developing it through semester one of the next academic year. It hopes to enlist the help of students as well as the Nightline committee to shape the new provision.