The law and occupations

Sam Stone has helpfully produced a document about the law as it relates to university occupations in England and Wales. It covers, among other things, squatters rights and issues around court injunctions. Download it here:

OccupationLawUpdated .

Take it, read it, print it, distribute it, know your stuff.

Real & Fake NCAFC events (and how to get our support for your demo)

We are living in exciting times!

Everyone at NCAFC is really happy about how much is going on and the amazing response we get from people all across the country. We are constantly bombarded with questions and affiliations and people wanting to organise local events.

As we understand that for some a quick supportive reply might suffice to get NCAFC’s support, it needs to be said that things are not that quick & easy.

There have been some “fake” NCAFC events going around Facebook and being Twittered about so here are our guidelines:

HOW TO KNOW IF IT IS A REAL NCAFC EVENT?

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HOW TO GET NCAFC TO BACK YOUR EVENTS?

  • Send us an email to [email protected] with your personal information (name and university/school/city) and a brief description of the event (type of event/date/location).
  • We will discuss it and vote it through in a local or national NCAFC meeting, which will be open for you and anyone else to come along and pitch in.
  • We will keep in touch with you until the big day (Note: the bigger the event, the more involved we will get with details such as security, materials, stewards, etc)

We hope this helps.

Don’t put yourself in danger – only attend events you know the organising body of. If in doubt contact organisers and ask them to explain what security measures have been taken. It is bad enough that the police is violent even after we meet with them, imagine how they can get if they know nothing about the demo you are thinking of attending.

Keep safe and… Merry Christmas!

Press Statement – Police Violence and Vote on Tuition Fee Increase

The National Campaign Against Fees and Cuts utterly condemns the violence inflicted on demonstrators by the police on the 9th of December national demonstration in central London and reiterate that the passing of the bill on the tuition fee increase will not deter, nor discourage future actions.

The coalition government managed to pass the tuition fee increase by 21 votes only – a sign of how weak the government is and that it can be beaten.  Deputy Prime Minister, Nick Clegg, suffered a huge blow to his leadership policies as 21 of his MPs rebelled against the tuition fee increase.

The resistance will continue in the new year. The National Campaign Against Fees and Cuts, as well as thousands of students across the country, will not give in until these cuts and fee increases are stopped.

Mounted police charging and ‘kettling’ of protesters are disgusting attacks on people’s right to protest and cannot be justified. The demonstration was militant but good natured as thousands assembled in Parliament square. The police adopted a hands-off approach until around 15.30h when ‘kettling’ began, followed by increasingly violent assaults on students.

The police attacked protesters, journalists and even a demonstrator in a wheel chair, dragging him across the ground. Many people were hospitalised and at the time of writing (23.30h) many people were still contained in Westminster, a cruel form of collective punishment for defying the government.

Message of Support from General Secretary of FBU

Message of support for students

From Matt Wrack, general secretary of the Fire Brigades Union

“The Fire Brigades Union sends warm greetings to students taking action on fees and on the Education Maintenance Allowance. Firefighters know the value of education – it should be a right for everyone, not a privilege restricted to the wealthy. The government’s policy on education is a vindictive policy of class hatred.

“The Fire Brigades Union stands in solidarity with students in your struggle, just as many students have supported us. Together workers and students can push back the government’s cuts and austerity agenda. United we can change the world. Educate, agitate and organise.”

PRESS STATEMENT: Met scaremongering ahead of tomorrow’s London protests

The National Campaign Against Fees and Cuts is concerned about the latest press release by the Metropolitan Police, which could discourage many students and other members of the public from taking part in tomorrow’s protests against the tuition fees rise.

We have met with the Metropolitan Police several times in order to coordinate the march to Westminster and have been helpful and forthcoming with information about the number of students expected and the route.

  • It is unacceptable that, in a democratic nation like ours, that elected politicians can turn their backs on promises they made.
  • It is worrying that, consequently, governmental institutions like the Met, proceed to restrict protests against such politicians via scaremongering and alarmism.

With several thousand students travelling to London to protest, it is the Metropolitan Police’s duty to engage with citizens andfacilitate non-violent protests. However, the latest statements by Commander Bob Broadhurst, head of the Met’s Public Order Branch, resemble rather scare tactics that tendentially lead to misinformation and silence the public.

We encourage parents, guardians, teachers and all other members of the community to join us in the march on Thursday, 9th of December 2010.

We encourage all to take an active role as stewards, guarding both younger children, as well as the democratic right of future generations to protest in this country.

We hope to see a more positive and cooperative attitude from the Metropolitan Police on their future public statements.

Statement of Support from Women Against the Cuts

This came into our email box today.
We would like to thank Women Against the Cuts for their kind words of support.
Solidarity!

Women Against the Cuts supports students demonstrating against the Coalition Government’s attack on our education system. We condemn the harsh and inhumane police activity, including the tactic of ‘kettling’, in suppressing the right of students to have their voices heard.

The proposed increase in tuition fees and program of cuts will devastate the education system and burden the next generation with thousands of pounds of debt. This will clearly disadvantage working class people from entering higher education and will hit women the hardest as it will take longer for them to pay the fees because of the Gender Pay Gap.

On the 9th of December, Women Against Cuts will stand in solidarity with students and all those working in the sector in the fight to save jobs and access to education.

Free fees for poorest students and other appeasement politics – Press Statement

Press Statement NCAFC – Free fees for poorest students and other appeasement politics

Legal advice for upcoming demos (STRONGLY RECOMMENDED READING)

If you know people who were on the protests, please send them a text asking them to contact GBCLegal if they were arrested/assaulted, witnessed an arrest/assault etc.

  1. If you were arrested then please contact us ASAP.
    Why? We are monitoring the legal situation and trying to make sure that everyone gets the help they need.
  2. If you witnessed an arrest, please contact us.
    Why? We will try to put you in touch with the solicitors of those arrested so that they can mount a defence.
  3. If you witnessed specific police officers using unreasonable force or abusing their powers, please get in touch (especially if you have video or photographic evidence.
    Why? We hope to be able to help those wishing to pursue legal complaints.
  4. If you tried to leave a kettle because you wanted/needed to go home/use the toilet/take medication etc but were refused, please get in touch.
    Why? We aim to collect statements/video to help challenge the use of this police tactic.

NO COMMENT
You do not need to talk to the police about anything. If you are arrested, giving your name and address will speed up the process of being released. Any other information may be used against you and once you start talking it can be hard to stop: so don’t say anything, it is easier! If they ask you questions, just say ‘no comment’, until you have spoken to a solicitor. And don’t sign anything.

DON’T USE THE DUTY SOLICITORS
If you’re arrested you have a right to FREE legal advice. You can use a ‘duty solicitor’ but we strongly advise against it. If you haven’t been told at the protest of local solicitors who have experience of dealing with protesters, we recommend you use BINDMANS 020 7833 4433 who should be able to come to your interview if you are in London or advise you by phone on what to do elsewhere.

BEFORE YOU LEAVE THE HOUSE ON THE DAY
We recommend you print one of the provided bust cards and read our quick check legal advice HERE.
Also, write one of the telephone numbers provided on your arm/hand, so it is always with you in case something happens.
You are also welcome to write down NCAFC contact numbers – the more the better as on the day phones tend to  be extremely busy – so keep two or three with you and keep trying if no one picks up.

www.greenandblackcross.org
079 4654 1511
[email protected]

9 December 2010 March on Parliament Poster & Flyers

9 December 2010 – Shut Down London Poster

9 December 2010 Shutdown London Flyer

Humanities and Social Sciences Matter

Following the mass protests and occupations of the last few weeks, a group of academics – some of them very senior – have come out against the government’s plans for HE, particularly its plans for Social Sciences and Humanities.

While not in the radical direct action tradition of the NCAFC, the Humantities Matter campaign is an important indicator of the breadth of the emerging  discontent. The letter, published today in the Telegraph of all places, calls for a Public Enquiry into the future of universities – and attacks the government for attempting to “rush through changes, the far-reaching consequences of which are potentially so damaging.”

If the waves of direct action manage to force the government to back down, they may well do so through mechanisms like this.

http://humanitiesmatter.wordpress.com/

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/comment/letters/8166244/Deep-unease-in-universities-at-dangerous-haste-of-supply-and-demand-reforms.html