November 9th national demo: route confirmed as students prepare for the autumn of resistance
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- Route for 9th November national demo agreed by police: click here: Confirmed-route for PDF
- Tens of thousands expected to attend in fight over government’s education white paper
- Demonstration will link up with St Paul’s Occupation, and will rally symbolically at Moorgate
- Protest to be joined in the capital by thousands of striking electricians
The national demonstration against fees, cuts and privatisation now has an agreed route, less than two weeks ahead of November 9th. The demonstration, called by the National Campaign Against Fees and Cuts, is being supported by NUS and UCU, as well as Occupy LSX and a host of trade unions.Organisers expect tens of thousands to attend.
The route will take the march from its starting point on Malet Street, through Trafalgar Square and up the Strand, before passing St Pauls’s and rallying at Moorgate Junction. This follows the decision to march on the City, rather than to Parliament, in the midst of fresh financial crises and Occupy LSX.
Protesters will be marching to derail the government’s higher education white paper, which has been described by academics and students as a chaotic and regressive attempt to introduce markets and private providers into education, effectively ending it as a public service.
Michael Chessum, from the National Campaign Against Fees and Cuts, said: “In marching on the City, we are sending a message that we will not let the Government to hand over education to the markets. Education should be a public service, accessible to all – not a corporate enterprise.”
Students will be joined on the day by thousands of striking electricians, who are marching with Unite the Union in protest at a 35% national pay cut. The National Campaign Against Fees and Cuts is fully supporting the electricians’ strike as part of a broader opposition to pay and pensions cuts ahead of the November 30th strikes, and the two mobilisations may link up on the day. UK Uncut have also indicated support for the demonstration.
The demonstration will finish at Moorgate Junction, symbolically next to London Metropolitan University, which will be one of the hardest hit institutions. London Met has the highest percentage of working class students in the country, with more black and minority ethnic students than the whole of the elite Russell Group combined. Last academic year saw a 70% cut to our Undergraduate course portfolio and a move to more vocational style degrees, and activists are anticipating more cuts over the next year. Meanwhile, the Financial Times advertises watches for $1.5m, and boardroom pay has risen.
Claire Locke, President of London Met students’ union, said: “These policies have led to a disproportionate attack on our most vulnerable students. We have already had students drop out due to financial hardship and lack of student support. London Met SU, UCU and UNISON branches voted unanimously to support the national Demonstration and we will be working with the local communities to build a mass turnout for the 9th of November.”