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From The Socialist newspaper, 3 March 2010

We don't want to see a 'lost generation'

Invest in jobs, education & Training

Youth Fight for Jobs, photo Sarah Mayo

Youth Fight for Jobs, photo Sarah Mayo   (Click to enlarge)

"We should try to work with the masters of globalisation"..."Companies like McDonalds... provide a fantastic service that people value at a price that people can afford." Students and education workers will be horrified to learn that these were the words of Professor Don Nutbeam, vice chancellor of Southampton University, in a public debate on public service provision.

Clare Blackwell, Southampton Socialist Students

Planned cuts to universities are reported to total a third of their annual spend! No wonder students are increasingly asking: are we heading for a McEducation system with only job cuts and course closures on the menu? Nutbeam's "strategic plan" to take his university into the UK's top ten will mean nothing but job losses and course cuts.

First to be axed at Southampton are the sports and foundation programmes. Chris Russell, a Southampton graduate and pro-athlete for Team GB says: "The indefensible way in which this announcement has been made shows blatant disregard for the livelihoods, careers and sentiments of staff and students alike."

In a move designed to minimise opposition, the "consultation period" on the cuts ran over the holiday and exam period. These cuts come at the same time as the university is building an elite performance facility, a move attracting significant business investment. In a bid to secure private research investment our universities are selling us short on our education.

The UCU lecturers' union expect that this will mean thousands of job losses. Yet these cuts are coming at a time when record numbers of young people are applying for university.

Build the fightback!

Youth Fight for Jobs Demonstration 28 November 2009, photo Sarah Mayo

Youth Fight for Jobs Demonstration 28 November 2009, photo Sarah Mayo   (Click to enlarge)

Across the world anger at the attacks on young people's rights to jobs and education is erupting into mass movements. From occupations and walkouts in California, where more is spent on prisons than on education, to the mass action of students and workers in France, Austria and Germany, young people are saying: "we will not pay for this crisis!"

Movements are also beginning to develop here in the UK. On 1 March 150 students stormed and shut down a governors' meeting which was discussing cuts at Westminster University.

Andy Waterman, a member of Portsmouth Socialist Students reported on a protest of around 100 people at Portsmouth University. The university faces the likelihood of at least 3 million in cuts which, if implemented, will see the loss of around 100 jobs and the possibility of whole courses being shut down.

Socialist Students members from Leeds University helped to mobilise a 200-strong protest and demonstration, with large numbers of lecturers participating on Thursday 25 February.

Ian Pattison, Newcastle Socialist Students, reported that a big Newcastle Free Education Network meeting had lecturers, students and even people from other universities attending. It is clear that these cuts will not go unchallenged. Protests have also taken place against cuts at Sussex, Nottingham, Leicester and other universities.

Jobs and education

On Saturday 13 March, in Barking, east London, and in other places around the country, young workers and students will march together with trade unionists to fight the agenda of big business, of cuts and privatisation.

No to job losses! Fight all the cuts! For a fully funded higher education system accessible to all! For universities run in the interests of students, workers and society - not big business!

Join the action on 13 March

Demos

Barking, East London
Saturday 13 March
Assemble 12 noon, Mayesbrook Park, near Upney Station

Manchester

Saturday 13 March
Assemble 12 noon, All Saints Park on Oxford Road
March to the city centre rally

Yorkshire day of action

Saturday 13 March
Rotherham, Bradford & Hull.
Contact Iain on 078 098 39793

Gigs

Newcastle

11 March 7pm
Trillians Rock Bar, Newcastle
3 entry
Bands: Unrelenting Fury and Starblind
Call 07989 806 104

Thursday 18 March: Protest against cuts in higher education

On Thursday 18 March the higher education funding council for England (HEFCE) will announce more detailed plans for university cuts. The government and university managements hope they can quietly get away with taking away our right to a decent education.

Socialist Students is calling for a national day of action to show them the huge opposition to cuts and fees that exists. We call on all students, anti-cuts campaigners, trade unions and workers to organise protests and campaigning and to come out in support of striking lecturers. Let's build a national movement to defend education.

Protests will take place at:

Contact Socialist Students for plans, details, and help organise in your area. Call 02085587947 or email: socialiststudents@hotmail.com.

Check out the website: www.socialiststudents.org.uk

Join the Facebook group here: http://tiny.cc/18march

Donate to the Socialist Party

Coronavirus crisis - Finance appeal

The coronavirus crisis has laid bare the class character of society in numerous ways. It is making clear to many that it is the working class that keeps society running, not the CEOs of major corporations.

The results of austerity have been graphically demonstrated as public services strain to cope with the crisis.

The government has now ripped up its 'austerity' mantra and turned to policies that not long ago were denounced as socialist. But after the corona crisis, it will try to make the working class pay for it, by trying to claw back what has been given.

  • The Socialist Party's material is more vital than ever, so we can continue to report from workers who are fighting for better health and safety measures, against layoffs, for adequate staffing levels, etc.
  • Our 'fighting coronavirus workers' charter', outlines a programme to combat the virus and protect workers' living conditions.
  • When the health crisis subsides, we must be ready for the stormy events ahead and the need to arm workers' movements with a socialist programme - one which puts the health and needs of humanity before the profits of a few.
Inevitably, during the crisis we have not been able to sell the Socialist and raise funds in the ways we normally would.
We therefore urgently appeal to all our viewers to donate to our special coronavirus appeal.

Please donate here.

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In The Socialist 3 March 2010:

Fighting for jobs, services and conditions

PCS: All Out to Defend Jobs and Services

Stop council cuts


Youth fight for jobs

Invest in jobs, education & Training

Cut the working hours, not the jobs!

Portsmouth students and workers unite to fight cuts

Brighton students say: Save our nursery

EMA inadequacy impacts badly on students


International socialist news and analysis

Building action across Europe

Greece - millions take part in general strike

Spain: Thousands join mass demonstrations


Socialist Party news and analysis

The fairytale world of RBS

Nationalise the energy giants

Activists launch socialist challenge

Walsgrave hospital Coventry: Stop the parking charges rip-off

Fast news


Socialist Party workplace news

Where is the BA cabin crew dispute going?

Smash the bosses' construction blacklist!

Leeds lecturers win concessions - but cuts remain to be fought

Workplace news: In brief


Unison

Unison general secretary election: Nominate Roger Bannister

Legal ruling exposes hypocrisy of Unison leadership


The Socialist Interview

FBU general secretary speaks to The Socialist


Socialist Party women

Women will be at the fore in the fightback!


Media

Global media monster News International condemned

The hounding of Tommy Sheridan

Savage cuts planned at the Beeb


Football

Supporters should own Pompey, not developers


Socialist Party feature

The worldwide thievery of big business


 

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