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From The Socialist newspaper, 3 March 2010

Portsmouth students and workers unite to fight cuts

Wednesday 24 February saw the first protest organised at Portsmouth University in opposition to the proposed cuts in education funding.

Andy Waterman, Portsmouth Socialist Students

Around 100 people gathered at University House to hear speeches from UCU lecturers' union and student activists, and to raise awareness about what effects the cuts will have on students now and in the future.

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.

The demonstration forced the vice-chancellor of the university, John Craven, to address the rally and ensure us that he 'understood' our concerns. However, it is not the vice-chancellor who will suffer through these cuts but the ordinary workers, lecturers and students.

The demonstration was called by University of Portsmouth Against Education Cuts (UOPAEC) which, on paper, has the support of the students union and the local UCU.

Unfortunately, to the dismay of the activists at the rally, the students union decided to organise a trip to London for an audience with local LibDem MP Mike Hancock on the same day as the protest and in the same week as its 'fee fighters' initiative!

In contrast, Youth Fight for Jobs activist Ben Norman spoke at the rally and called for a vote for Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition candidate Mick Tosh in Portsmouth North in the general election, showing that young people and workers have an alternative to the cuts and privatisation agenda of the mainstream parties.

Portsmouth Socialist Students, who have played a key role in this campaign, distributed leaflets linking the fight for free education with the fight for decent jobs and calling for another demonstration on 18 March when the Higher Education Funding Council for England announce the education funding plans for the forthcoming year (see also back page).

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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.

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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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