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Home | Friday 12th March 2010 | Issue 713

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Following last week’s ‘Stop The Cuts’ demonstration and occupation of the senior management’s offices (see SchNEWS 712) six Sussex University students had been suspended and excluded from campus. The six had been ‘positively identified’ following Sussex Police’s thuggish altercations on campus.

If that weren’t draconian enough, the university has got an injunction preventing ‘occupational protest’ on campus. Universities have been granted anti-protest injunctions in the past- generally against animal rights protesters. Sussex has gone further in banning protest/occupation for whatever reason. Scared of more direct action they’ve gone into overkill mode against campus protest.

Unsurprisingly this OTT reaction has been a red flag to a bull for students already angry at campus cuts and bloated senior management salaries. This Thursday saw an unprecedented 500 strong demonstration for the reinstatement of the six students. Later a several hundred strong student mob went on an impromptu rampage round the university management buildings before winding up at the main lecture hall for an occupation, sorry ‘autonomous teaching space.’ At the last count scores of students are still there, with plans to stay there until the ‘Sussex Six’ were allowed back. At around 5pm the university issued a partial climbdown- leading to cheers from the liberated lecture hall. The six would be allowed back on campus to study, but not to have any fun or do any troublemaking.

*On Thursday the 18th of March the UCU (University and College Union) will be taking strike action against the planned 115 job losses. Staff will be on the picket line, they’ll appreciate support from anyone who wants to come and show some solidarity.


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