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From The Socialist newspaper, 14 April 2021

Students in action: Protest on 21 April

Photo: Socialist Party Wales

Photo: Socialist Party Wales   (Click to enlarge)

Michael Morgan, Socialist Students national chair

During the past academic year students have gone through a radically changed learning environment, at great cost. There has been no reduction in already extortionate tuition fees and, in most cases, no reduction in rents.

Student mental health services are still inadequate, and our job prospects once we graduate are the least promising they've been since the 2008-09 financial crash. Capitalism has failed us again and again.

However, we have fought back. Last summer, A-level students led the way with the fight against a flawed and class-biased awarded exam results and won victories. Students have also been involved with the anti-racist Black Lives Matter protests, as well as rent strikes.

Kill the Bill

More recently, we've been part of the 'Kill the Bill' democratic rights protests, and protests against sexual harassment and violence - including the sit-in protest at Warwick University.

Socialist Students has been to the fore in these struggles, including in Swansea, Bangor and Plymouth where our members have been organising rent strikes.

We have consistently called for an immediate refund of tuition fees for the year for all students, paid for by the government, as the first step towards abolishing them and cancelling all student debt. We have also demanded a refund for unused student accommodation, taking university halls of residence back in-house, stopping evictions, ending poor housing, and to protect rent strikers. Socialist Students has called a day of action on 21 April over these issues.

While the National Union of Students has come out in support for some of these movements, a lack of real, determined leadership is apparent.

We need a democratic and fighting national students' union. A union which calls for an end to the marketisation of education now, and which mobilises to change the unacceptable learning conditions at universities. Through rent concessions and the A-level protests of last summer, we know that if we fight, we can win, so it is important that we do this!

Ultimately, we must fight to end the system which has allowed these conditions to arise. Capitalism seeks to make education a profitable product rather than a pursuit for knowledge. Commercialisation has undermined staff working conditions as well as our learning and living conditions, and will continue to do so for as long as it is profitable.

We stand for free education, better housing and living conditions - join the fightback and join Socialist Students.

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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.
  • 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.
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In The Socialist 14 April 2021:


Covid-19

'Covid passports' discriminatory and questionable - fight for workplace safety

Covid inquiry? Workers must decide


News

Tensions escalate in Northern Ireland

How to deal with the tax-dodging mega-rich? Nationalise!

NHS pay: reject Tories' miserly 1% 'offer' - Fight for full 15% rise

Amazon - union vote lost

Tory hypocrisy over housing benefit cut

US cops shoot dead another black man


Elections

Every voter in Wales has the opportunity to vote for TUSC

TUSC: Launching a working-class electoral alternative in London

London housing crisis: vote TUSC to fight back


Workplace news

PCS elections: Support the Broad Left Network for a democratic, fighting union leadership

St Mungo's maintenance workers on indefinite strike

Thousands of London bus workers strike across multiple companies

Rally for sacked RMT rep Declan

East London cleaners fight outsourcing and redundancies

Bristol Water workers walk out

SPS Technologies workers end strike after management backs down

Thurrock Council workers strike against pay cuts

Deliveroo workers strike and protest


Lessons from history

1920s-30s Britain: A working-class movement fighting unemployment and capitalism


Campaigns news

Youth under attack

Students in action: Protest on 21 April

Why you should join the Socialist Party

Cardiff: Hundreds protest to free Siyanda

Worcester: Kill the Bill

Fighting fund target smashed. Can we do it again?


Readers' opinion

The Socialist Inbox


 

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Related links:

Socialist Students:

triangleAction marks the way for a national student movement for free education

trianglePolice invade student homes

triangleBuild for the day of action on 21 April

triangleSocialist Students day of action

Students:

triangleYouth under attack

triangleThe system is broken... youth unite and fight back

trianglePimlico Academy protests: "Run by racists for profit"

triangleFighting sexual harassment and gender violence on campus

Protest:

triangleDefend the right to protest - to resist bosses' attacks

triangleNottingham NHS pay protest

triangleProtesting works - Unite to defend the right to protest

Socialist:

triangleSocialist Party national meeting: Perspectives for socialism after the elections

triangleStop Israeli state brutality

Education:

triangleBeal school strikers suspend action after possible victory

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Obituary

Obituary - Jon Elvin

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United action needed to defeat fire and rehire

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TUSC is back

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RMT

RMT: Militant industrial and political strategy must be fought for

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National Education Union

National Education Union needs a socialist, fighting deputy general secretary

12/5/21

Thurrock

Thurrock refuse workers strike escalates

12/5/21

Ealing

Ealing parking wardens strike against Serco over absence policy

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Norwich

Norwich City Council workers vote for strike action over broken promises on pay and conditions

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National Education Union

Beal school strikers suspend action after possible victory

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Sparks fight continues

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National Education Union

Four Socialist Party members elected to NEU executive

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East London

Goodlord strike forces talks

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Bullying

St Mungo's strikers fight on

5/5/21

Unison

For a fighting, democratic, member-led union to stop the austerity attacks

triangleMore Reports and campaigns articles...


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