The London headquarters of the National Union of Students remains a no-go zone for elected officers, a week after an investigation was launched into widespread allegations of bullying.
The Gray’s Inn Road building was still out of bounds for 20 full-time officers on Thursday, despite union management earlier saying the office would be closed to them for just a few days.
High-level meetings have been cancelled as a result of the closure, which was enforced after some officers said they felt “unsafe” in the office. The closure was previously described as extraordinary by a former NUS officer.
HuffPost UK reported last week how allegations of bullying had engulfed the elected officer team and NUS President Shakira Martin.
Martin has denied allegations of bullying, and an investigation into multiple complaints against her and others is ongoing.
The situation at the HQ became so “toxic” in recent weeks, multiple sources said, that staff members were seen crying at their desks.
“Safe spaces are for everyone but us,” one current officer said.
The NUS did not respond to multiple requests for official comment.
The union has not revealed the cost of cancelling meetings this week, which included a session of its National Executive Committee (NEC).
HuffPost understands that travel and accommodation for Thursday’s NEC meeting was organised weeks in advance.
Chief Executive Simon Blake said in an email last Tuesday that he was “instructing all NUS UK officers not to come into the office initially for the rest of this week Wednesday 31st - Friday February 2nd inclusive”.
Blake said the move was necessary to protect the safety of all officers.
A management source said the NUS office has remained open to staff members throughout the turmoil.