Wednesday, January 19, 2011

THE STRUGGLE OF STUDENTS IS A STRUGGLE OF ALL OF US Manifest for the student protest 21.01.2011 in den Hague

On Friday January 21st, we demonstrate together with the students, teachers and staff of universities and academies in Den Haag, The Netherlands.

On Friday January 21st, we demonstrate together with the students, teachers and staff of universities and academies in Den Haag. We demonstrate against the Dutch government's plans to abolish the study financing for Master students, to impose a 3000-euro fine to students that delay more than 1 year to graduate and respectfully to their education institutions where they study, and the abolishment of their right to free of charge public transport. We also demonstrate to stop the further austerity measures that the Dutch government is planning to impose in the near future and the budget cuts that Universities and Academies themselves have started to impose, which will increase the pressure on students, will reduce the size of the staff and will increase the workload of teachers.

Our struggle, however, goes beyond the specific austerity measures that the government and the higher education managers are planning. We do not share their aims and their vision for education. For us, education is a universal right accessible to all and not a privilege. We struggle for equal rights for every teenager, regardless of social class, nationality, gender or religious affiliation, to access the higher education program she or he wishes without fees and fines. We struggle against the creation of a 'debt-generation' of young people that instead of building their career and contributing to the society, they will try to repay the debts they created while studying. We struggle for public higher education in order to provide high-level education to all students and high-level research to the society. We struggle for ensuring a fair workload and fair pay according to the principle of 'equal work, equal pay' for all the academic and supporting personnel of higher-education institutions. We struggle for ensuring that the education and scientific research within higher-education institutions serves the needs of the society and not the needs of the private market as it is more and more happening nowadays.

The struggle in higher education is closely connected to the struggle against all the austerity measures of the Dutch government. People from the lower income strata are being consistently targeted by these austerity measures. Postal workers are being fired or see their workingconditions and rights diminished. Civil servants are facing lay-offs and seeing their salaries to freeze. Workers of the public media are threatened by mass lay-offs. Many workers of the private sector are facing the threat of increased unemployment that the austerity measures will bring. People working in the cultural sector are seeing their jobs to be lost and their sector to diminish. People receiving benefits will see their income to decrease dramatically. Immigrants face official racism through the participation of PVV in the government, direct or hidden discrimination by their surroundings, high unemployment rates and a glass ceiling in their careers that becomes stronger by the time. Now, the access of the children of all these people to higher education will become more and more difficult.



On the 21/1 at 11:30, we demonstrate from the Hogeschool of Den Haag to the Malieveld and at 13:00 we support the rally on the Malieveld and all the actions that will follow.


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