Sharron Martin Hinds
Liverpool University Student Assembly Against Austerity
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Hello everyone! I am an undergraduate student at the University of Liverpool studying History. I am also representative for the University of Liverpool Students against Austerity group. My interests in activism and politics became aroused during the General Election of 2015. During my first year of studying as a mature student I realised there was very little help for us, with this I was encouraged to join the University of Liverpool Mature Student Society with aims to have our voices heard for more support and financial help.
With the Conservative victory in the General Election in 2015 came the reforms which saw student tuition fees increased and student finance grants abolished. This incensed me to how unjust and harsh these reforms would affect students and even deter some people from considering further education as a life option. My desire to gain a degree and have the chance to find employment in the museum sector keeps me determined to stay on, however the thought of the debt I will be left with also brings great anxiety.
Living in deprived part of Liverpool I have seen people refused adequate housing, some of my friends who work are having to use food banks, additionally we have seen cuts on housing benefits, child tax credits and benefit sanctions placed on people to claw back public money from the poorest in society, this along with the NHS suffering severe cutbacks. To top it all off the MP’s then have the audacity to justify giving themselves 10% pay rises and plead innocence when overspending on their generous expenses bills. Not to mention throwing of more public money into weapons of mass destruction. These reforms over the past few years have frankly got my blood boiling.
With Jeremy Corbyn’s victory in the Labour leadership election the hope of a more equal and fair democracy has been highlighted. His determination to see tuition fees scrapped and all sectors of society having a fair chance to go to university and make the best of their lives has inspired me to help in the fight against this present elitist Tory government and their bourgeoisie values.
We as students need to make a stand against this government and their attacks on education, we need to stand together and give voice to our concerns against austerity. As part of the SAAA I believe we can make a change for ourselves and future generations.