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On Monday (Feb 8th) following a large demo 100+ people occupied a conference centre at the University of Sussex in a 27 hour “flash occupation”. They are fighting 116 redundancies, large cuts and there causes. With UCU still balloting for strike in Sussex it is likely we will see strikes, more occupations and creative action in the future. Groups taking action like this against attacks on education and the neoliberalisation of the university are truely part of a growing massive global movement (see link below). A statement of solidarity from the Really Open Uni is posted below.
Solidarity from the Really Open University, Leeds
In both Sussex and Leeds as well as across the UK we have seen drastic cuts in education. These threaten the livelihoods of thousands, the quality of education and the possibility of going to University for innumerable amounts.
This crisis in education is not new. We have seen the logic of a system constantly in crisis long at work in the university: everything is now based in terms of profit, the value of ideas is based on their financial viability and the quest for knowledge is lost. By this logic ‘efficiency drives’ and fees are perceived to be inevitable.
The crisis in the university is fundamentally linked to global crises, the same rationale of profit has brought the economy to collapse and the climate dangerously spinning out of control.
In order to fight the latest in a long line of attack on education and the system behind it we must not merely be defensive. We must act to transform education; to open it up, allow people to teach what they want to teach and learn what they want to learn, we need to restore the intrinsic value of the idea and the quest for knowledge. In doing so we can help fight against our oppression more generally. Occupation can be a useful tool in the struggle to achieve this.
Across the world people are resisting attacks on education and going into occupation. This is only part of a wider struggle against the domination of capital, a struggle for a better world.
We are glad to see such resistance in Sussex and stand with you in solidarity,
Strike, Occupy, Transform!
The Really Open University