Join the Socialist Party Join us today!

Printable version Printable version

Facebook   Twitter

Link to this page:

From The Socialist newspaper, 17 February 2010

Sussex student union elections: Support for socialist campaigners

Sussex university students demonstrate, photo Socialist Students

Sussex university students demonstrate, photo Socialist Students   (Click to enlarge)

A busy week at Sussex University has left Socialist Students proud of the progress we've made, if a little exhausted. Claire Laker-Mansfield received 508 votes in her election challenge for education officer in the student union, placing her second.

Sussex Socialist Students

Socialist Students also played a leading role in the latest radical action by the Stop the Cuts (StC) campaign which has been built over the course of the year in response to management's proposals to cut 115 jobs as well as vital services like student advisers and the sexual health service.

On Monday 8 February, a StC demonstration culminated in over 100 students storming a conference centre on campus and occupying it overnight. Although they carried out orders from management, the security workers (themselves threatened with 16 redundancies if the proposals are implemented) thanked us for fighting to defend their jobs and were happy to let food supplies through.

We received messages of solidarity from members of the UCU lecturers' union on campus, student unions across the country and movements against education cuts as far away as Vienna and California.

Claire called for a demonstration in support of the occupation for the next day in her election hustings speech and built solidly for this. The next day 200 students marched through campus to the occupied conference centre. After a rally the students outside stormed an entrance and more than 100 joined the occupation.

In the occupation Socialist Students member Sarah Wrack was elected to the committee of four who negotiated with management, spoke to the press and addressed the demonstration the following day. Socialist Students also played a major role in deciding strategy and demands inside the occupation, stressing the demand that management talk to representatives from the occupation and not use the student union as a mediator.

Socialist Students also argued that rather than simply demanding more time for consultation on the cuts, we specify that by 'consultation' we mean genuine consultation including representatives of the trade unions, the student union and the StC campaign.

Socialist Students

Socialist Students has raised its profile on campus through the election campaign, strengthening our reputation amongst activists and bringing us into contact with a number of people interested in getting involved in Socialist Students. Everyone we spoke to was impressed by our record of campaigning against fees and cuts and our policies for furthering the fightback at Sussex.

A number of issues put our campaign at a disadvantage. Firstly, despite our attempts to discuss and debate election candidates, Sussex Socialist Workers Student Society decided to stand their Another Education is Possible slate against Claire, one of the best known activists on campus.

Although none of the hardline right wing won their positions, the winners are in general politically 'moderate', in reality on the right, and we don't expect them to stand up to management next year. Socialist Students will continue to build the StC campaign widely to prevent a widening gap between political activists and the majority of students.

We ran the only principled, socialist campaign and Claire's votes can be the basis for building a strong student movement. It is disappointing that the traditionally radical Sussex student union has, to an extent, swung to the right but, as shown by the occupation, the student movement continues to grow and will do so in spite of the union bureaucracy if necessary.

When the results were announced, all the left candidates put aside disagreements from the campaign and stood together to sing the traditional song of the socialist left, the Internationale, much to the distain of the right wing who attempted to drown us out with the national anthem. They were unsuccessful.

Why not click here to join the Socialist Party, or click here to donate to the Socialist Party.

In The Socialist 17 February 2010:

Fight council cuts!

Socialist Party campaigns

Nominate Roger Bannister: Council workers need a fighting union

Notts Tories attack the vulnerable

Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition

TUSC to fight cuts in Spelthorne

New TUSC sponsors

Socialist Party news and analysis

New health inequality report reveals widening class divide

Ministers and MI5 colluded in the cover-up of torture

BNP's phoney changes

Fast news

Workplace analysis

The construction industry blacklist: Paltry punishment for attacks on workers

Oppose university cuts - defend jobs

Socialist Students

Sussex student union elections: Support for socialist campaigners

Student places crisis

Youth fight for jobs

Youth Fight for Jobs: Leeds march for jobs and education

Socialist Party feature

Wales: New challenges for socialists

Celebrate May Day this year with The Socialist

International socialist news and analysis

Greece: Massive public sector workers' strike against savage austerity plans

Capitalist crisis threatens the eurozone project

Winter Olympics: Shortage of snow but no shortage of debts?

Protests as Canada's Tories suspend parliament


Home   |   The Socialist 17 February 2010   |   Join the Socialist Party

Subscribe   |   Donate  

Related links:


triangleGerman elections: rise of the far right and right-wing government will provoke resistance

triangleUsdaw elections announced - fight for a left leadership, vote for Amy Murphy

triangleHong Kong: mass demonstration against repression

triangleVenezuela: Capitalist offensive sharpens after assembly elections

triangleFrench elections: Macron's win


triangleSocialist Students: setting out our stall...

triangleEducation under attack! Reports from the front line of the fightback

triangleWorkplace news in brief

triangleAcademies can be stopped


triangleTower Hamlets Socialist Party: "You can't have capitalism without racism" (Malcolm X)

triangleTower Hamlets Socialist Party: Capitalism in Crisis - is Corbyn the answer?

triangleWest London Socialist Party: Young people need socialism!


triangleCardiff Socialist Students confront 'Parasite' Jacob Rees-Mogg

triangleLeeds Socialist Students marks 'International Safe Abortion Day'

Socialist Students:

triangleSupporting the general strike in Catalonia


triangleHousing crisis: Corbyn's positive measures blanked by Labour's right

Reports and campaigns

Reports and campaigns



Justice for Tube cleaners demo



Salford Unison condemns pay cuts


Royal Mail

CWU fights court attempt to stop national strike



Carlisle NHS campaigners hand in petition to MP



Don't wreck our rec! Campaigning to save green space in Standish



No more fire deaths - ensure safety now!



Cardiff Socialist Students confront 'Parasite' Jacob Rees-Mogg


John McDonnell

Manchester rally discussed unionisation and nationalisation



Join the Orgreave Halloween rally



Workplace news in brief


Democratic rights

Who's watching who?: The fight for justice, trade union and democratic rights


Northern Ireland

Boeing bust-up threatens thousands of skilled jobs



Too much to cross the Mersey


Royal Mail

Set for national strike action



Supporting the general strike in Catalonia

triangleMore Reports and campaigns articles...

Join the Socialist Party
Subscribe to Socialist Party publications
Donate to the Socialist Party

triangle13 Oct The end of the Tories?

triangle11 Oct Nasty party out the Tories

triangle11 Oct CWU fights court attempt to stop national strike

triangle11 Oct The fight against racial discrimination is tied to fighting against...

triangle11 Oct Catalonia: Workers can finish what Puigdemont won't

triangle6 Oct Boeing bust-up threatens thousands of skilled jobs

triangle4 Oct The nasty party turns on itself... but the Tories must be driven out

More ...

triangle17 Oct London: TUC lobby & rally; and London march

triangle18 Oct Warrington & St Helens Socialist Party: 1917-2017; the October Russian Revolution

triangle18 Oct Hackney Socialist Party: 100 years ago - the Bolshevik-led revolution

triangle18 Oct Tower Hamlets Socialist Party: Capitalism in Crisis - is Corbyn the answer?

More ...

Socialist Party Facebook page
Socialist Party on Twitter
Visit us on Youtube



October 2017

September 2017

August 2017

July 2017

June 2017

May 2017

April 2017

March 2017

February 2017

January 2017





















Platform setting: = No platform choice