Link to this page: http://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/630/9873
Youth speak for jobs at UCU union rally
I was invited to address the UCU union's day of action rally in Nottingham on Sunday on behalf of Youth Fight for Jobs. I was joined by speakers from the UCU, NUT and Unison trade unions and the rally was filmed by regional TV. Also on the platform was Lillian Greenwood, Labour MP for Nottingham South.
Lillian said that Labour would always defend education from cuts because Labour believes that education should be open to all. I was the only speaker to spotlight her hypocrisy, mentioning the fees review led by Lord Browne, a former head of BP who left under allegations of corruption. It was set up by Labour peer Peter Mandelson and looks set to recommend massive increases in annual tuition fees this autumn.
In response to the new Con-Dem Higher Education minister David Willetts calling university funding a "burden on the taxpayer", I argued that the only real burden on the taxpayer is the banking sector, which was bailed out using £850 billion of taxpayers' money. If the banks' profits went back into society, public services like education could be expanded dramatically rather than being cut.
I spoke immediately after Lillian and got a much bigger round of applause!
In The Socialist 23 June 2010:
Youth fight for jobs
National Shop Stewards Network
Workplace news and analysis
Socialist Party news and analysis
Socialist Party feature
International socialist news and analysis