Robbie Young, NUS Vice-President Society and Citizenship, explains why he’s marching on the #Nov19 United for Education demo
I came into the student movement because I believe in the good of students standing up for their interests, collective action and the basic idea that if we work together to achieve our aims we are stronger than if we work alone. That should always be the basis for any union, including our National Union of Students. As an LGBT activist it makes me feel safer, empowered and ready to take action to change society and the world for the better.
That’s why I’ll be marching in solidarity with colleagues from across NUS, SUs and UCU on Saturday. This right-wing Tory Government is attacking us and our education system and for that reason it is time to take a stand.
In particular, it has been a terrible few years for Further Education, with devastatingly deep cuts, college closures and job losses, with a host of damaging mergers either happening or being proposed, at a time when major investment in the system is really needed. It’s the Further Education students I know and represent that I’ll be thinking of when I’m marching.
It is right that this demo is part of a wider strategy that includes constructive engagement and that engagement, on all issues, should always be a central priority for our national union. But the situation for our Further Education members is dire at present. Our Further Education colleges need investment. The deep cuts should end. Mergers need to stop. This must be a priority, both for the student movement and the Government.
I hope you’ll join me in marching on #Nov19 so our collective voices can be heard. You’ll find me on the megaphone!