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Socialist Students organise to fight fees and cuts
Claire Laker-Mansfield, Socialist Students national organiser
On Saturday 4 August, over 35 Socialist Students organisers met to discuss campaigning in universities and colleges during 2012-13. Topics ranged from the impact of £9,000 fees on a new cohort of students to the effects of the capitalist crisis on young people, many of whom are thirsty for socialist ideas, looking for how to change the world.
There was lots of discussion on the importance of the two big protests in the calendar this coming autumn term.
The 20 October trade union demonstration is a vital date for all those who want to fight austerity. For students it will also be important for linking up with workers who are fighting back against the government's onslaught.
Socialist Students is supporting the Youth Fight for Jobs fortnight of action surrounding this, on 13-27 October. We aim to use this to put our societies at the heart of the resistance to cuts, fees and privatisation on every campus.
Following this, using the momentum developed to build a mass turn out on the student demonstration on 21 November will be a crucial task. But neither of these demonstrations should be the end of the movement, instead they should be a springboard to further action.
At the meeting we discussed putting pressure on the NUS leadership to not only build a mass turnout on 21 November but to follow this up with more action, such as strikes, walkouts and occupations.
Those attending on Saturday came away with a sense of the importance of putting forward an alternative to crisis-ridden capitalism. Discussing ideas and holding meetings on the key questions facing our movement are equally vital parts of our work.
While this academic year promises new challenges it will also bring new opportunities to build Socialist Students. Saturday's meeting was a step in preparing our organisation for the important year ahead.
In The Socialist 8 August 2012:
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